‘This American Life’ Isn’t the Only Outfit With Retractions Due

Mike Daisey, in an op-ed piece published by The New York Times on October 6:

I have traveled to southern China and interviewed workers employed in the production of electronics. I spoke with a man whose right hand was permanently curled into a claw from being smashed in a metal press at Foxconn, where he worked assembling Apple laptops and iPads. I showed him my iPad, and he gasped because he’d never seen one turned on. He stroked the screen and marveled at the icons sliding back and forth, the Apple attention to detail in every pixel. He told my translator, “It’s a kind of magic.”

Daisey now admits this is false. This is what The Times chose to run on their op-ed page the day after Steve Jobs died.

Update, 30 minutes later: The Times has now removed the above paragraph from the piece, and prepended this editor’s note:

Editor’s Note: Questions have been raised about the truth of a paragraph in the original version of this article that purported to talk about conditions at Apple’s factory in China. That paragraph has been removed from this version of the article.

This isn’t over. “Questions” haven’t just been raised — Daisey has admitted it was a complete fabrication. Sort of a bogus move to pull the paragraph without saying what the paragraph claimed.

Update: Here’s a cached version of the original piece, hosted by Maciej Cegłowski.

Friday, 16 March 2012