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New York Times corrects its description of league’s HGH testing plan

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In an analysis posted Friday night on the New York Times website and published in the Saturday edition of the paper, Juliet Macur of the Times presumed that the NFL’s new HGH testing program would entail one test per year.

The league, via spokesman Greg Aiello, responded aggressively, and yet as of this morning there was no clarification or correction.

Earlier today, the Times got its facts straight, publishing a new article that contains no byline, and by appending a correction to the original article, even though this newfangled Internet contraption allows edits to be made to the body of an erroneous article.

“While one reporter for The Times had the additional details,” the new article states, “the reporter who wrote the article with experts assessing the details did not.”  (At least they didn’t say the article was taken out of context.)

That said, the new article subtly couches the fact that testing will occur on more than an annual basis as the league’s contention, even though the league has shared with PFT (and presumably with the Times) the language from the new CBA that states, unequivocally, that testing will occur both on an annual basis and on a random basis.  (Though the new article states that the league declined to provide the actual drug policy, the policy is a different document than the CBA.)

Either way, it’ll be interesting to see whether the matter gets prominent treatment in the Sunday Times, or whether it’ll be buried at the bottom of the page with the off-off-Broadway listings.

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12 Responses to “New York Times corrects its description of league’s HGH testing plan”
  1. elwaysbrain says: Aug 6, 2011 6:56 PM

    Does this Aiello guy actually have a job? It seems all he does is answer your questions via email and read the NY Times all day over and over again until it’s time to hit the sheets. And the next day he complains about the stories they write. The sad thing is he’s probably getting paid 7 figures for all that.

  2. AlanSaysYo says: Aug 6, 2011 7:24 PM

    Are you really going after the New York Times over journalistic integrity, Mr. Terry Bradshaw Is Dead?

  3. Deb says: Aug 6, 2011 7:38 PM

    Instead of debating the NYT’s faux pas, can you please provide some insight on HGH? In reading knowledgeable commenters on the subject (when you can wade through the smacktalkers to find them), there seems to be a debate about whether HGH actually enhances performance. And there’s definitely a debate about the reliability of the test.

    Steroids have proven to be dangerous to the long-term health of those taking them. That’s the best reason for banning them. What about HGH? And how can the league rely on tests that aren’t reliable or which are administered by companies that only get paid if they come up with positive findings? Would appreciate your insights.

  4. depotnator says: Aug 6, 2011 8:06 PM

    “…will include both annual blood testing and random blood testing for human growth hormone, with discipline for positive tests at the same level as for steroids.” does not clearly state that every player will be subject to both annual and random tests…or how many random tests and when. Given that HGH disipates and is undetectible with current testing procedures after 24- 48 hrs in the body, the timing of the tests is critical for them to be effective and accurate. The issue is still vague enough that it is silly to be going after the New York Times, which is probably more impartial in its skepticism than NBC/PFT regarding the effectiveness of NFL testing procedures.

  5. MichaelEdits says: Aug 6, 2011 8:32 PM

    I often edit papers on topics that I know next to nothing about. I think the writer could be forgiven for getting facts about HGH wrong but should be able to get facts about reading a calendar correct. But what do I know?

  6. prior0knowledge says: Aug 6, 2011 9:07 PM

    You can’t have an annual random test because that means that after a player was tested during the year, that he knows he will never be tested again that year and can use HGH all he wants.

  7. prior0knowledge says: Aug 6, 2011 9:09 PM

    However, I question why HGH is even on the banned substances list. All it does is promote healing and does not improve performance, per se. Also, I don’t believe HGH use has any long-term dangers. So I don’t think it is in the same category as steroids.

  8. buckbrennan says: Aug 6, 2011 9:32 PM

    well even if all HGH did was promote healing that is still shortening recovery time for muscles which would allow for an athlete to train more and get bigger faster and stronger

  9. abninf says: Aug 6, 2011 9:41 PM

    The NYT has plenty of practice with retractions.

  10. jikthree says: Aug 6, 2011 10:14 PM

    The NFL will jump at any chance to embarass the NYT since the times shamed the NFL to move on the concussion issue

  11. nsevh76 says: Aug 7, 2011 8:32 AM

    Mike, you’ve attacked this ariticle pretty harshly for a guy who prints rumors for a living. I don’t think your credibility is any different than the NYT, which is to say 0!

  12. twitter:Chapman_Jamie says: Aug 8, 2011 8:28 AM

    Anyone who gives the NY Times a shred of credibility deserves to be duped.

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