'This is not a ritual' says Howard Kurtz in his media mea culpa

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Oh, woe is Howard. But things are better now.

Former Newsweek/Daily Beast media analyst Howard Kurtz was more or less “fired” from his high-profile perch Thursday after an erroneous report on NBA player Jason Collins’s decision to reveal he is gay. The veteran critic took to “Reliable Sources” to make things right with the viewing and reading public on Sunday.

Was he on the hot seat? No, it was more of a tepid seat. But at least he sat in it.

Mr. Kurtz, who has hosted the CNN weekend show since 1998, offered a mea culpa for his ways with a caveat, during an interview with Politico’s Dylan Byers and NPR’s David Folkenflik, who also cover media high jinks in the national press. The pair were restrained, but insistent.

“I view credibility and trust something you have to earn day after day. I have had a pretty long career in which I have not only done television work and not only done newspaper work but written five books. I’d like to think that I built up a big store of credibility,” Mr. Kurtz said, occasionally looking directly into the camera.

“When you get something wrong, when you are too quick to say something without adequately checking, then you lose a little bit of that credibility. And that’s why I say that I have thought about this very deeply, that I am determined to learn from it. But I would like it be viewed in the full context of my career,” he continued.

“And just one more thing. This is not a ritual for me, where you come on camera and say you’re sorry and hope to move on. I am truly sorry about what happened. I believe deeply in good journalism and fair journalism, and I’m determined to learn from this episode and minimize the chances of anything like this happening again.”

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