On Monday, the paper of record published an e-mail from the mayor of Paris slamming Caroline Kennedy’s political maneuvering as “appalling.” Unfortunately, the Times failed to check whether the message was authentic—it wasn’t. Guess that explains all those articles by Nigerian princes.
The oft-repeated narrative of print news going to the pits has gained another protagonist, as the century-old Christian Science Monitor recently decided to cease its daily print edition, banking now on the Internet as its key distribution mechanism.
The Malaysian newspaper Makkal Osai is apologizing for running a cartoon image of Jesus Christ enjoying a beer and a cigarette on its front page, claiming it was a mistake made by an editor who had downloaded the image from the Web. However, Makkal Osai’s efforts to quell the controversy may not be sufficient for some religious groups, judging by last year’s flap over the infamous Muhammad cartoons.
Check out the Gambian voting system. It’s enviably simple: “Voters enter a booth and pop a clear glass marble into one of three drums representing the candidates.” The marble hits a bell on its way down, preventing people from voting more than once. No hanging chads, no hacking, just a satisfying plunk when your vote goes in. Are we advocating marbles? No, but a paper trail would be good.