October 29, 2016

JANN WENNER: ROLLING STONE ERRED IN RETRACTING RAPE ARTICLE.

“We did everything reasonable, appropriate up to the highest standards of journalism to check on this thing,” Mr. Wenner said in a libel trial in federal court here. “The one thing we didn’t do was confront Jackie’s accusers — the rapists.”

As he has previously, Mr. Wenner assigned much of the blame to the woman at the center of the article, identified as Jackie, whose account of being raped began to fall apart shortly after the article was published two years ago. Mr. Wenner said there was nothing a journalist could do “if someone is really determined to commit a fraud.”

He said that while the magazine rightly retracted “the Jackie stuff,” he disagreed with the decision to retract the entire article in the wake of a damning report on it in April 2015 by The Columbia Journalism Review. He said the bulk of the article detailed ways that the University of Virginia could improve its treatment of victims of sexual assault.

“I stand by the rest of the article: personally, professionally and on behalf of the magazine,” Mr. Wenner said.

Wenner also  “apologized” to the embattled ex-UVA dean, then played the victim card, the New York Post notes:

Wenner apologized in a deposition to the former University of Virginia dean who is suing the magazine for defamation — but said he disagreed with the decision to retract the entire campus-rape story, it was revealed Friday.

“I’m very, very sorry. It was never meant to ever happen this way to you*,” Wenner told Nicole Eramo in taped testimony played at the $7.85 million defamation trial.

“And believe me, I’ve suffered as much as you have,” he said. “And I know what it’s like. I hope that this whole thing hadn’t happened but it is, and it’s what we live with.”

The Daily Beast has a slightly different version of Wenner’s “apology,” which makes it sound much snottier than how he’s quoted by the Post:

“We screwed up. Bring it on. We suffered,” Wenner said, before going on to apologize to Eramo. “It was never meant to happen this way to you. And believe me, I’ve suffered as much as you have. But please, my sympathies.”

The “please, my sympathies,” if an accurate quote, doesn’t sound very sincere. Particularly when preceded by “Believe me, I’ve suffered as much as you have.” Sure, Wenner is the real victim here. And as Iowahawk adds, “Did he also apologize to the innocent students he accused of violent rape? No? Then F his apology.”

Apologize? Wenner still believes the students at UVa are guilty – and that his magazine’s story is fake but accurate, to coin a phrase.

* Exit question: How deep is this Obama-appointed DoE official’s involvement in the Rolling Stone hoax?

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