Kill Duck Before Serving: Red Faces at The New York Times: A Collection of the Newspaper's Most Interesting, Embarrassing and Off-Beat Corrections

Overview

That's Fit to Print"

"All the News

On June 21, 1950, the front page slogan appeared like this. By the time the error was noticed, it was too late to correct it that day. But it was corrected, in a manner of speaking, the next day and every day thereafter.

Even Homer nods. Some mistakes are careless oversights while others are genuine howlers. This irresistible collection of notable errors from the pages of The...

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Overview

That's Fit to Print"

"All the News

On June 21, 1950, the front page slogan appeared like this. By the time the error was noticed, it was too late to correct it that day. But it was corrected, in a manner of speaking, the next day and every day thereafter.

Even Homer nods. Some mistakes are careless oversights while others are genuine howlers. This irresistible collection of notable errors from the pages of The New York Times includes everything from gross historical inaccuracies, glaring misidentifications, and disastrous recipes to a wide range of inexplicable, unsupportable boners. Kill Duck Before Serving is a quirky selection of all the corrections fit to print by one of our most esteemed newspapers.

March 11, 1975

In yesterday's issue, The New York Times did not report on riots in Milan and the subsequent murder of the lay religious reformer Erlembald. These events took place in 1075, the year given in the dateline under the nameplate on Page 1. The Times regrets both incidents.

April 7, 1995

Because of a transcription error, an article about Senator Alfonse M. D'Amato's remarks about Judge Lance A. Ito misquoted the Senator at one point. In his conversation with the radio host Don Imus, he said: "I mean, this is a disgrace. Judge Ito will be well known." He did not say, "Judge Ito with the wet nose."

October 22, 2000

An article about Ivana Trump and her spending habits misstated the number of bras she buys. It is two dozen black, two dozen beige and two dozen white, not two thousand of each.

July 14, 1985

A report misidentified the document on which John Hancock put his famous prominent signature. It was the Declaration of Independence, not the Constitution.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Media insiders Linda Amster and Dylan Loeb McClain present Kill Duck Before Serving: Red Faces at the New York Times, a collection of the paper's more unusual corrections. From misidentifying the Albanian national animal where it was "emblazoned on t-shirts worn by" Miss Albania USA contestants, to confusing Rambo for Rimbaud, Times reporters make nearly as many fumbles as the rest of us. In his introduction, assistant managing editor Allan M. Siegal traces the history of the paper's handling of errors. Only in 1970, we learn, did A.M. Rosenthal make a specific section wherein the Gray Lady could fess up. This funny, fast read will please media folks. Line drawings by Tom Bloom. ( Jan.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312284275
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 1/14/2002
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 5.38 (w) x 8.38 (h) x 0.48 (d)

Meet the Author

Linda Amster is manager of news research at The New York Times.

Dylan Loeb McClain is manager of graphics for Business Day.

Allan M. Siegal is an Assistant Managing Editor at The Times and co-author of The New York Times Manual of Style and Usage.

Tom Bloom’s drawings have appeared in The NewYork Times, The New Yorker and Time magazine.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2002

    The Mysterious New York Times

    The New York Times is so earnest about being 'the newspaper of record' that it's delightful to discover that the paper has printed some whoppers. Editors and writers should love this collection of corrections, which was compiled by two New York Times editors. It pokes gentle fun at the newspaper's magisterial journalism (e.g., 'An article about the effects of an asteroid's impact 65 million years ago misspelled the name of the crater it left beneath the Gulf of Mexico. It is Chicxulub, not Chicxlub.') Good bathroom reading! Funny and informative.

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