Monday, February 08, 2010

If a correction falls in the forest…

Big City Liberal recently expressed surprise that he'd missed that Ezra Levant had posted a minor correction related to his Giacomo Vigna defamation case. (Vigna, in case you forgot, is suing Ezra for suggesting that he'd faked an illness before a Human Rights Tribunal.)

How is it that the ever-vigilant BCL has missed this? The reason becomes clear if you look at the dates. The post in question presently looks like this (apart from the red arrow, pointing at the date):

The blog aggegrator Silobreaker, however, didn't get Ezra's post until a week later (again, note the red arrow):

This can only mean, I think, that Ezra's correction was not originally published on January 18, as it claims, but on the 23rd. As confirmation one might note that the first comment to the post was also made on the 23rd (as noted by me and others here). (Those comments have subsequently disappeared.)

Now, there has been some discussion over at BCL (here, in comments, and here) about what this means. Clearly the post has been "back-dated". (Blogging software allows bloggers to override the dates of their posts, making things appear to have have published either earlier or later than they were written.) Why? Such back-dating has the effect of burying it below other blog posts, with the result that it receives less attention than it otherwise might. Whether that was the purpose here is for others to judge.


When did Ezra really publish his 'correction'? His post was picked up by the aggregator as its item 229754183:

The posts are apparently numbered in sequence:
Since Ezra's post is next in the numerical sequence it too must be dated to the 23rd.

Second Update.

If there is any doubt, here is Ezra's own atom feed, which dates the post to January 23rd: