THE Herald dismisses with the contempt blatant falsehoods deserve, the story that was carried by online website, NewZimbabwe.com, which claimed that sub-editors who were on duty last week when President Mugabe tripped on a poorly laid out carpet at Harare International Airport were in trouble over publication of the photos and story of the incident.
NewZimbabwe.com claimed that âthree sub-editors were ordered to write âcomprehensiveâ reports explaining who authorised them to publish the pictures in question.
The website went on to claim that presidential photographer Joseph Nyadzayo was responsible for the photos that captured President Mugabe tripping and breaking the fall by landing on his knees.
Herald Editor Caesar Zvayi said the story was a desperate attempt to de-legitimise The Herald since it had caught competitors unawares by publishing the real account of events at the airport when the lunatic fringe of the media thought their falsehoods would carry the day.
âThe NewZimbabwe.com story is an example of fanciful desktop journalism where ghost writers sit before the computer and conjure the first thing that comes to their mind as reality.
âThis is why there was no attempt at all to get a comment from The Herald to verify if the reports, if indeed such reports were made by any source other than the highly imaginative mind of the writer of theÂ Â story.
âMore so, any journalist worth his or her salt or any serious publication will know that in any newspaper organisation, the buck stops with the editor, so why would sub-editors be held responsible for the publication of any story or pictures?
âBut such is the level of ignorance periodically unleashed on poor readers in an industry where the majority of practitioners came face-to-face with the phrase âbreaking a fallâ only last week,ââ Zvayi said.
NewZimbabwe.com took down the story, a few hours later, without offering any explanation.