'Media Buzz' Blasts Rolling Stone's 'Egregious, Journalistic Train Wreck'
Sharyl Attkisson joined Howard Kurtz on "Media Buzz" today to discuss the fallout from the Rolling Stone's widely criticized story detailing an alleged gang rape at a University of Virginia fraternity.
In the story by Sabrina Rubin Erdely, a woman only identified as "Jackie" alleged that she was lured into a room at a fraternity house during a party, then sexually assaulted by seven men.
The story prompted the university to suspend fraternity activities on campus.
The story has been called into question by The Washington Post, which highlighted the fact that Erdely had not spoken to any of the alleged perpetrators.
Rolling Stone has now backed away from the report, writing that there are discrepancies with the original account.
Attkisson said that she would never take the word of a source alone and always would contact the accused.
If a source declined to cooperate under those conditions, then the story would be a non-starter, Attkisson said.
Kurtz asked if people at Rolling Stone should lose their jobs over "such an egregious, journalistic train wreck."
Attkisson said that's up to Rolling Stone executives to decide, but she did point out that the magazine's apology statement made no sense, and there still could be shoes to drop in this scandal.
Kurtz pointed out that a danger in investigative reporting is falling in love with a story, falling in love with a source.
"Sometimes, as a reporter, you have to back off what you think is the truth and what you think is a better story for the sake of the facts that you have," Attkisson said.
Watch the clip above.