A local newspaper solved the riddle of the mystery ‘quintuplets’ whose birth was announced in The Times – leaving a national newspaper pundit with egg on his face.
The birth announcement last week read “to Kate Pong, Newport, Shropshire, beautiful quintuplets Beyonce, Tyra, Bobbi, Barack and Earl.”
It prompted a polemical blast from the columnist Richard Littlejohn who wrote on Saturday: “If true, somewhere out there in Shropshire is a single mother called Kate Pong with quins, variously named after an American pop singer, a model and the U.S. President. You couldn’t make it up.”
In fact, as the Newport Advertiser had revealed two days’ previously, Kate Pong was a chocolate labrador who had recently given birth to five pups.
The paper’s web editor Alex James said: “We picked up the announcement from The Times and after a bit of gentle digging we discovered it was in fact a dog.
“It’s a shame Mr Littlejohn hadn’t read our story before he printed his column believing Kate Pong was a person. As a result he’s made a real dog’s dinner of his editorial.
“A simple search led us to find out the real story, which we posted on our website on Thursday afternoon.
“I dropped him a line to let him know what had happened but have heard nothing back. Hopefully he’ll now read the Newport Advertiser on a regular basis to avoid similar mistakes in the future.”
The original announcement was placed by a friend of Kate’s owner, Fiona Wallace, from Newport.
She said: “It wasn’t intended to mislead. She didn’t say they were human, she just didn’t say they were dogs.”
JJ (08/09/2009 16:28:46)
To see a spiteful, narrow-minded columnist like Littlejohn with egg on his face is pure quality! You’d think with his wage, he’d check his facts first!