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Thursday, January 17, 2008


Here's the Odd News Story of the Day.

Comments (6)

Was there actually a plane?


I think the AP must have sent out a story about a plane crash that said the pilot was dead -- before the death was confirmed. When the AP realized that the death was not yet confirmed, they sent around this notice to editors of their member publications, advising them to pull the story. Instead of just pulling the story, the O or its computers posted the notice as a separate story...

... I think.

I preferred the old "terminate with extreme prejudice"

what you said, Jack.

(It's not a news item; it is instructions to the AP syndicate members.)

Many protocols and conventions of 'Newswire Syndicates,' developed from the decades after 1830 when the Wire was literally the telegraph wire beside the railroad tracks, running from town to town.

The telegraph operator (at the train depot) at first had to 're-key' each telegram (or news story -- the big one was Lincoln's murder), to relay it along to the next town. The relaying operation was of course soon automated, very soon.

Along the Wire, any town's local news story was seen by all towns. Like a 'party line.' Some towns 'reprinted' it, and some didn't. Depending on politics, commonly.

Hence: The Associated Press Newswire, today.

Credence in the facts of news stories, (mis)developed differently.

Divers Find Body of Pilot in Lake Crash, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS, January 18, 2008, Filed at 12:55 a.m. ET.

CLEVELAND (AP) -- The body of a pilot whose twin-engine plane crashed into Lake Erie was located Thursday in about 30 feet of water, authorities said.

Thomas Fijalkovich's body was found in the plane's fuselage, but strong winds made the water choppy and conditions unsafe for divers to recover the remains, said Petty Officer William Mitchell with the U.S. Coast Guard.

The Beechcraft Baron went down Wednesday night shortly after taking off from Burke Lakefront Airport near downtown.

Fijalkovich, 68, was a contract employee for Aitheras Aviation Group, an aircraft charter company based in Cleveland. He lived near Ravenna, about 25 miles southeast of Cleveland.

The search for Fijalkovich's body covered about 26 square miles, said Petty Officer Matthew Schofield.

The Cuyahoga County coroner's office reported earlier Thursday that the pilot's body had been recovered. The office sent investigators to the scene and retracted the earlier statement. ...

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