President Donald Trump on Saturday night railed against suspended ABC News reporter Brian Ross' inaccurate report on former national security adviser Michael Flynn, and said more media outlets should discipline reporters over "their Fake News!"
ABC News inaccurately reported that Donald Trump, as a presidential candidate, asked Gen. Michael Flynn to contact the Russians.
On Friday, the hosts of The View (with one notable exception) celebrated when they Joy Behar received breaking news on air that Michael Flynn was prepared to testify that as a candidate, Donald Trump directed him to make contact with Russian Federation.
That would have been an explosive development in the ongoing Russian Federation investigation, but hours later, Mr Ross clarified that report on the evening news, saying that his source now said that Mr Trump had done so as president-elect, after the election.
Goldston also said, "If it isn't obvious to everyone in this news division, we have taken a huge hit and we have made the job of every single person in this news division harder as a result".
"It is vital we get the story right and retain the trust we have built with our audience - these are our core principles", the statement added. "We fell far short of that yesterday".
Ross was suspended for four weeks the next day.
One of the first to celebrate the news was Trump, who took to Twitter to congratulate the network.
ABC News's Brian Ross in 2015.
Steve Bannon, the former White House chief strategist, said on the Breitbart News radio show on Monday that "ABC's got a lot to answer for". "This error plays right into the hands of people who callously try to say that news media all just lie", Kathleen Culver, the director of the Center for Journalism Ethics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, told the New York Times. On Saturday, ABC News apologized for the error and announced Ross' suspension. "About how in this particular moment, with the stakes as high as these stakes are right now, we can not afford to get it wrong".
Goldston expressed additional frustration at the fact that it took more than seven hours for ABC News to clarify the story on ABC's "World News Tonight". Mr Ross was criticised for politicising the story with the error. Then, ABC News upgraded the clarification to a correction. The claim was made based on only one anonymous source.