USAWTFM HQ, June 4 – After a careful review of sourcing and editorial procedures, U.S. Army WTF Moments is retracting a series of reports centered on the 3-10 Infantry Brigade Combat Team, headquartered at Fort Polk, La, and has accepted the resignation of editor Mike Trysom.
“This series of reports, beginning with correspondent Jose Tamale’s story on miscarriages occurring during a JRTC rotation did not meet our normal level of sourcing,” said JC, USAWTFM’s executive officer and chief of operations. “While we normally ensure each story has a minimum of two separate sources, this story depended too heavily on secondhand information. USAWTFM has been around for 7 years with hundreds of stories published. Be that as it may, we take every allegation of an untruthful story very seriously, and we have revised our procedures so we can do much better in the future.”
The second retraction is the commentary written by editor Mike Trysom, which acknowledged the faulty reporting of the original piece from Tamale, but pivoted into to a separate incident involving another battalion in the brigade, namely a suicide attempt by a soldier who was reportedly under suicide watch, and issued a weapon in spite of the recommendation on his behavioral health profile. “While we have confirmed the veracity of the suicide attempt, it was a shameless attempt to deflect criticism for our poor reporting,” JC said.
“The 1 million-strong USAWTFM Nation deserves better, and the reviews and higher editorial standards we are implementing will help to provide that. Mike has accepted his responsibility in this matter and submitted his resignation this morning.” he added.
Those editorial standards include a deeper vetting of anonymous sources, and the discontinuation of secondhand information. The practice of “naming names” is also under careful review to prevent the inadvertent damage to professional reputations based on faulty or incomplete information.