Webathon

Boo-ya! You Met Our $100,000 Webathon Matching Grant!

But stay tuned for more....

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(UPDATE 26 HOURS LATER: Oh my word you people are AWESOME! You met this match, essentially doubling your giving power, in just over one day. This exercise alone brought in more money than each of our first six webathons. BUT WE'RE NOT DONE YET. Keep refreshing the main page for exciting new info about matching grants that, shall we say, were inspired by this one! And thank you so very much.)

In a moment, we're going to talk about some excellent, media-debunking reasons to DONATE RIGHT THE HELL NOW to Reason's annual webathon, in which we ask readers, viewers, and listeners of our various editorial offerings to make a tax-deductible donation to help support the nonprofit that makes all our work possible…but first!

A generous, anonymous, scrumpilicious donor has just this moment offered to match the next $100,000 you people give us. Here is what that means: If you give us $50,000 over the next several days, the donor will also kick in $50,000, and we will get $100,000. If you give us the full $100,000, we then get $200,000. It is the multiplier effect, is what I am saying.

Please don't leave all that juicy potential money on the table. Won't you please click on this button and make our $100,000 bar come to life?

OK, Reason Editor in Chief Katherine Mangu-Ward already explained the various giving levels (though I would stress the option of making a slow-and-steady monthly contribution, which you can set and then forget!). And Editor at Large Nick Gillespie introduced you to our history-making Reason Roundtable NFT auction. I'm going to talk about a thing Reason has been doing well for a half-century, including in the 12 months since we last convened this fun annual exercise: media correctives.

Yes, most of us recall Senior Editor Robby Soave's epic debunking of the Covington Catholic School fracas in Washington, D.C., back in January 2019. Senior Editor Elizabeth Nolan Brown has been a one-woman dismantler of sex-trafficking-related junk stats for years. Older hands may even recall our beloved 1981 cover story exploding the media narrative about the Love Canal.

But folks, we provide this valuable corrective service on the regular. A small sampling of our debunkery over the past 365 days:

* "The Washington Post Tried To Memory-Hole Kamala Harris' Bad Joke About Inmates Begging for Food and Water," by Eric Boehm.

This article, published two days after Joe Biden's presidential inauguration, was our third-most popular piece of the year, with 415,000 page views. After the hubbub, The Washington Post restored the old wording, telling Boehm, "We should have kept both versions of the story on the Post's site (the original and updated one), rather than redirecting to the updated version."

* "CDC Took Mistaken Data on Delta Variant Transmissibility From a New York Times Infographic," by Elizabeth Nolan Brown.

In a classic example of bad journalism merging with bad public-health bureaucracy, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) had asserted, falsely, that the delta variant of COVID-19 is "as transmissible as" chickenpox, which it concluded not from Following the Science, but by…cribbing from an illustration in the Paper of Record. Concluded Brown: "Apparently, the federal agency charged with disseminating COVID-19 data and setting public health policy is taking its cues from a newspaper infographic. Oh my."

(Such disinformation more commonly travels in the other direction—from an administration distorting science for political reasons to a media eagerly lapping the claims up like truth. Senior Editor Jacob Sullum in particular has deconstructed these dangerous untruths, in pieces such as "The Evidence Cited by the CDC Does Not Show That Vaccinated and Unvaccinated COVID-19 Carriers Are Equally Likely To Transmit the Virus," and "The Biden Administration Continues to Exaggerate the Risk Posed by COVID-19 Breakthrough Infections While Slamming the Press for Doing the Same Thing.")

Sometimes it's the media's role in egging on some of the worst modern pathologies, such as is documented in Robby Soave's piece, "The New York Times Helped a Vindictive Teen Destroy a Classmate Who Uttered a Racial Slur When She Was 15." It's the story of a kid who for three years held onto a video of a girl using a racial slur and then only unleashed it in a successful effort to get her bounced from college.

"This story is a powerful example of several social phenomena: the militant streak in social justice activism, the naivety of today's teens and their not-actually-disappearing Snapchat messages, social media's hunger for mob justice, and even the capacity for elaborate cruelty that has always existed among high schoolers," Soave wrote. "But the wildest thing about this incident is that most people will learn about it by reading The New York Times…. Nowhere does [the] article reckon with a very basic fact: The New York Times has opted to assist a teenager's desperate quest to ruin the life of a young woman who said something stupid when she was 15."

Do you find work like this useful? Then please consider donating to Reason approximately right now. If you act now, your dollars (or crypto!) will be effectively doubled, all the way up to our next $100,000. Do it today! You'll be glad you did.

NEXT: Against the Education Status Quo

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  1. Hey Reason, where is your coverage on the ghislaine maxwell trial????

    1. They're pro prostitution and sex trafficking so there hasn't been anything new for them to cover so far.

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  2. Was the $100k match included in Build Back Better or from the CCP?

    1. 100k buys a case or 2 of beast ice.

      1. We can rule sarc out as the anonymous donor.

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  3. Welch, I saw you on Timcast a few days ago. My assessment of you is more positive. You had a few good one-liners, so at least you have a sense of humor.

  4. Utter cringe.

  5. Does it really count when ENB pushes a myth and another reason writer debunks her?

    1. It might if it ever happened. The last time she stuck her foot in her mouth Gillespie jumped on Twitter to suck her click-dong until she peed on his face and called it a money shot.

    1. not currently, no.

      1. seize the dank!

  6. A new day, a new chance to tell you "No."

  7. Hey remember the time when Reason debunked the story of an armed insurrection taking place at the US capitol and worked tirelessly to free the 500+ people who have been detained for 11 months now without trial? Or that time they debunked the story about a white supremacist racist Illinois carpetbagger smuggling illegal automatic weapons into Wisconsin to kill niggers? Or way back in the olden days when they debunked the story about a secret video tape of Trump getting peed on by Russian hookers in a Moscow hotel room? It was a great example of their hard-hitting bipartisan equal-opportunity journalism when they also debunked the utterly unfounded story about Hunter Biden leaving shit loads of incriminating video evidence on a laptop computer. Thank you based Reason!

    1. You can tell Reason has become just another vehicle for regurgitating the same bullshit corporate media talking points because they've even adopted the same oblivious and unjustified delusions of self-importance.

    2. No shit. When Reason doesn't pick up the stories that conservative news outlets are harping on 24/7 it means they're shills for the left.

      1. Back to regular sarc today, I see.

    3. Exactly! Well-said. Reason has bent over backwards to find "libertarian" justifications for woke causes, and has turned its back on its core readers.

  8. lol still no. The 'journalism' was absolute shit this year.

  9. Charlie decided that needed plausible deniability as he bails you out?

    What a shit tier investment the mag must be.

  10. Now this is a funny article.

  11. You should also beat the drum for Soave's work in deflating the Rolling Stone's bogus University of Virginia fraternity "rape" scandal.

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