Lost in translation?

News items from The Onion now and then get reported as fact in newspapers in other countries — for example, the story about US lawmakers demanding a new Capitol building. But it seems the US media is not immune from that sort of thing either.

The NYT ends its report on accusations of sexual harrassment against a French official on this rather odd note:

The accusations against Mr. Strauss-Kahn have prompted some hand-wringing in the French news media over their unwillingness to publish information about what they consider the private lives of public figures.

But Le Canard Enchaîné, a respected weekly, defended the traditional approach in an editorial last week. “For ‘Le Canard,’ ” it wrote, “news always stops at the bedroom door.”

The “editorial” they are talking about is here, in the right column, headlined “On vous l’avait bien (pas) dit” (“We certainly did (not) tell you”).

It is possible that the NYT’s Scott Sayare had his suspicions, but was reassured by the weekly’s subheading, a little above and to the left: “Journal satirique paraissant le mercredi” (translation: “A very serious and respected journal appearing on Wednesday”.)

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