The disclosure caused a public mix
It was only after seven months after the fact, April, 1981, when Janet Cooke was granted a Pulitzer that the story was uncovered as a trick. As a matter of fact, for all intents and purposes each part of the piece fell under the most fundamental investigation. No editor bothered to check to see if Jimmy ever existed.
The disclosure caused a public mix. Janet Cooke had to relinquish her Pulitzer – the solitary time the honor was returned. The Post offered different statements of regret and led various post-mortems.
Even though the article and the ensuing controversy are largely forgotten, it led to important changes in American print journalism, such as requiring reporters to disclose their sources to editors for sensitive stories.
Rather than a lack of editorial oversight, but rather the opposite, the analysis revealed what went so horribly wrong here: a deep longing by the highest point of the paper to accept that one of its beat journalists broke a story customizing such a significant American social issue. The story was so instinctive, so private, thus thrilling, that leader proofreader Ben Bradlee and overseeing manager Howard Simons ignored the two monster warnings inside the piece: the way that Jimmy was strikingly smooth for an eight-year-old, especially an eight-year-old heroin junkie, and the possibility that grown-ups would transparently infuse a youngster with heroin before a journalist.
In the excited hurry to proceed with the paper’s vertical direction, these two splendid newsmen basically couldn’t see disconfirming proof. The Post failed its readers in this way.
Print reporting is a basic American organization and the Washington Post, alongside the New York Times, Money Road Diary, and local papers, support American culture by considering the strong responsible. In the expressions of late 1800s Chicago newsman Finley Peter Dunne, American papers serve to “beset the agreeable and solace the burdened.”