All shelters look alike

It happens to every journalist, some of us more often than others: you get something wrong. Not just getting it wrong, but getting it wrong enough to prompt an angry phone call and a correction.

In the Monday Calendar which came out this week (I do the weekly calendar on A2 on Mondays), I mentioned a fundraising campaign that the Welcome Hall Mission is doing on Wednesday where volunteers will ask for donations in the metro.

Except the Welcome Hall Mission has no such campaign. It’s Accueil Bonneau that’s doing that.

You might think it’s a small error, that won’t make much of a difference to anyone, and that’s perfectly understandable (Welcome Hall Mission is Mission Bon Accueil in French), but as a journalist there are no small errors (or, more honestly, an error isn’t small if it needs a correction).

On the plus side, this personal disgrace embarrassing error of mine gives me an excuse to point out that the Gazette is making an effort to correct articles online when an error is pointed out. My calendar for this week includes a note at the top in correctionese pointing out the mistake.

Doing this isn’t always as simple as it seems. There might be multiple copies of an offending article, for example. Or the correction might not get passed on to the online desk. But it’s necessary (if only to placate Craig Silverman), so everyone has to make an effort to do it.

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