It may have only been a few minutes, but it probably felt like an eternity for a miserable CNN homepage web producer. That’s how long an inaccurate headline remained on CNN’s site Thursday after the Supreme Court health-care ruling, which resulted in a pretty big goof from the network: It declared “Mandate struck down” on the web and on the air, until the truth — that the law was upheld — emerged.
But not before thousands of smart-alecks on Twitter took screenshots of the bad headline, making their own 21st-century version of “Dewey Defeats Truman.” CNN later issued a correction in bold letters across the top of its site, stating that the Court backed all parts of President Obama’s signature health-care law.
The error was just another example of the perils of the 24-hour news cycle, and the drive to be first. CNN anchors later said on the air that the bill was “confusing,” as they spent more time parsing it out. That didn’t stop social media users from going for the jugular, as they lambasted the network’s carelessness. After the health-care ruling, everyone with a Twitter account became a media critic.
I need a photoshop of Obama holding the CNN screenshot a la Dewey Defeats Truman.— Alyssa Warrick (@WeezieWeaver) June 28, 2012
How do. I screenshot on pc? I want to capture the delicious CNN fail forever.— Matthew Doster (@mtdosterly) June 28, 2012
I really hope someone got a screenshot of that CNN homepage. Dewey defeats Truman of today— Jena McGregor (@jenamcgregor) June 28, 2012
Update 11:30 a.m.: Within an hour, the ruling has birthed a gif reaction blog: “When SCOTUS upheld Obamacare.”
Also, #CNNheadlines has become a running joke on Twitter, with users tweeting imaginary inaccurate headlines from the network.
Ann Curry Is Staying At The Today Show FOREVER! #CNNHeadlines— Rachel Hastings (@rachelhastings) June 28, 2012