As journalists, our primary objective is to seek and report the truth. The Daily Nebraskan regrets to report that this week, we discovered one of our reporters had failed in that pursuit.
On Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2016, it came to our attention a reporter fabricated quotes in a recently published article under the headline “UNL’s Johnny Carson School performs comedy ‘Fuddy Meers.’”
The Daily Nebraskan has since retracted the inaccurate information included in the article in question, written by Mary Hope Mulcahy. We have also removed the reporter from The Daily Nebraskan staff.
Mulcahy cited two sources: Emily Callahan and Adam Turner, both University of Nebraska-Lincoln students who were indicated in the story to have been involved in the production of “Fuddy Meers.” We have spoken to Callahan and Turner, both of whom have denied participating in an interview with a Daily Nebraskan reporter in reference to this story.
The information attributed to these sources has proven to be false, and Mulcahy has admitted to fabricating quotes attributed to the two students.
While Mulcahy has expressed regret for her actions, it has become clear that this is not the only article in which she included fabricated quotes. The Daily Nebraskan is working to verify the authenticity of the facts and sources included in the remainder of this reporter’s stories and will correct each of these stories as we are able.
We were disappointed to find the reporter included false information in her work, but we also regret our own failure to recognize these errors in the editing process. We have reviewed our fact-checking processes and will continue to discuss how we can ensure errors of this nature are avoided in the future.
We sincerely apologize to those affected by the errors -- namely those who have been misrepresented as a result of Mulcahy’s fictitious reporting -- but we also apologize to our readers, with whose trust we understand has been compromised.
We are taking steps to rebuild this trust: Starting immediately, we are requiring reporters of all experience levels to submit source verification forms for each story, listing the name, title and contact information of each source cited.
Regardless of our status as a student newspaper, we strive for professionalism in all of our endeavors. Readers, rest assured we will continue to work diligently to serve the University of Nebraska-Lincoln community in seeking and reporting what you deserve: the truth.
Lani Hanson, Editor-in-Chief
and the remainder of The Daily Nebraskan staff