New York Times Quietly Scrubs ‘Unsubstantiated’ from Hunter Biden Laptop Story
In the original version of this story, Times reporters Shane Goldmacher and Kate Conger wrote
The Federal Election Commission has dismissed Republican accusations that Twitter violated election laws in October by blocking people from posting links to an unsubstantiated New York Post article about Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s son Hunter Biden, in a decision that is likely to set a precedent for future cases involving social media sites and federal campaigns.
This is rather ludicrous, since they could have easily verified that this was Hunter’s laptop and the emails came from Hunter’s email account. This is a routine media trick: it’s “unsubstantiated,” and we won’t attempt to substantiate it because we want to disparage it as fake.
The Times removed the word “unsubstantiated” from its story Monday night with no editor’s note to mark the change.
Hours later, the New York Times publishes an update to an article that removes the word “unsubstantiated” when talking about a New York Post article on Hunter Biden that was the subject of an FEC complainthttps://t.co/0SmUyIdP70 pic.twitter.com/FD7EpAEP3O
— Daniel Chaitin (@danielchaitin7) September 13, 2021
Kerr noted the original Times tweet is still sitting there on Twitter:
Breaking News: The FEC ruled that Twitter’s decision in October to block an unsubstantiated article about President Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, did not violate election laws, according to a document obtained by The New York Times. https://t.co/EzFKKvQ7X2
— The New York Times (@nytimes) September 13, 2021
Back in October 2019, Clay Waters highlighted how much the Times reported that Biden loved the “U word” on Ukraine revelations, and the Times repeatedly employed it:
Mr. Biden’s advisers have not been shy about offering advice to journalists. Earlier this month, the campaign sent a memo to an elite group of campaign reporters warning that any news story would be “misleading” if the Trump camp’s claims about Mr. Biden were unsubstantiated.
The U-word was also a Times favorite back in 2004 when the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth ran a campaign alleging John Kerry’s actions in Vietnam were not heroic.
The Goldmacher-Conger story was buried in the print edition, on page B-3 under the dull headline “Election Agency Dismisses Allegations.” That’s so vague, it’s a don’t-read-this headline. At the bottom of the web story, the Times lists their headline (perhaps in the New York edition) as “2 Rulings Protect Social Media’s Control.”