Fact-checking isn’t what it used to be: Emperor Hadrian’s architecture

This week’s print edition of the Economist left the printing presses with an astonishing typo: Emperor Hadrian “commissioned the Parthenon”. In the online edition of the article, mercifully, “Parthenon” has been corrected into “Pantheon”.

Journalism is a tough job, of course, and corrections are sometimes needed: but this is the biggest blunder I’ve seen in print in a long time. (Photo credit: Thomas Schlijper)

3 thoughts on “Fact-checking isn’t what it used to be: Emperor Hadrian’s architecture

  1. Fact checkers seem to be the first to go when budgets get slashed, unfortunately. I was asked to do my own fact checking not too long ago, as if that makes much sense. It was a good thing I did, though, because there were a bunch of howlers — much like the one above — that had been introduced into the story, like a game of telephone…
    Do Italian papers use fact checkers?

  2. I don’t know if there is a kind of fact checker in Italian newpapers, but I must think that isn’t a standard practice;
    I have read often very foolish lines, mainly when Italian correspondent abroad try to translate/understand English.
    Last episode was the repeated use in the Corriere della Sera of “avionica” (Italian for avionics) for “commercial aviation”.
    But the most ridicolous was the line in the newspaper Repubblica: ” American infantry soldier is equipped with a compass” where “compass” was translated “compasso” the Italian for compasses, the drawing tool.
    Do you imagine what an infantry soldier can do with a pair of compasses?
    A double bayonet?
    A special tool to kill fleas?

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