In a dramatic shift, the Chamber of Commerce announced Monday that it is throwing its support behind climate change legislation making its way through the U.S. Senate.
Only it didn’t.
An email press release announcing the change is a hoax, say Chamber officials.
Several media organizations fell for it.
A CNBC anchor interrupted herself mid-sentence Monday morning to announce that the network had “breaking news,” then cut away to reporter Hampton Pearson, who read from the fake press release.
Pearson quickly followed up with a second report saying the “so-called bulletin” was an “absolute hoax.” Smelling a rat, CNBC’s Larry Kudlow demanded to know whether the White House had been involved.
In a story posted Monday morning, Reuters declared: “The Chamber of Commerce said on Monday it will no longer opposes climate change legislation, but wants the bill to include a carbon tax.”
"Reuters has an obligation to its clients to publish news and information that could move financial markets, and this story had the potential to do that,” said a Thomson Reuters spokesperson. “Once we had confirmed the release was a hoax, we immediately issued a correction, and in keeping with Reuters policy, the story was subsequently withdrawn and an advisory sent to readers."
The Yes Men, a left-leaning activist group that often impersonates officials from organizations they oppose, took responsibility for the hoax.
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
I'm not sure how this happened ... what with the layers and layers of fact checking: