The well-respected publisher known as Bloomberg had almost started a war between Russia and Ukraine through a major publishing error. The headline that has been published around 4 p.m. had been live for over 30 minutes before editors from Bloomberg started to receive messages about their statement.
At first, their 72 million readers believed that the conflict between Russia and Ukraine had finally broken into a military war from its political state. In an apology post, they published much later, Bloomberg explained that their editorial team always prepares news headlines ahead of time in case something does happen. In this case, the headline “Russia Invades Ukraine” was prepared in case a military war actually had broken out between Russia and Ukraine.
“We prepare headlines for many scenarios and the headline “Russia Invades Ukraine” was inadvertently published around 4 p.m. ET today on our website. We deeply regret the error. The headline has been removed and we are investigating the cause.” (Quote taken from Bloomberg)
It is not bad enough that due to media the tensions have been raised to this point, but such an error could have caused an actual war if any of the military combatants within Russia or Ukraine had seen this. In a worse case, what if other media outlets followed this statement based on the highly acclaimed reputation of Bloomberg.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy had blamed the media for the high tensions that have been created by the two countries. The president stated that the panic throughout the masses is created by the West and also stated that this may be the cause of starting a conflict that can be solved through political debate.
Well, I am sure that he knew that such hiccups as the one created by Bloomberg were exactly what Zelenskyy was referring to. Officials from Ukraine have not yet given a response to the incident.
Officials from Moscow didn’t find this publishing error to fond either. Their response was that this incident perfectly shows the dangers of how the media could actually start a war within a conflict with high tension that was already risen by the media.
“Bloomberg’s ‘Russia invades Ukraine’ blunder “perfectly demonstrates the dangers of the [tensions] whipped up by countless aggressive statements coming from Washington, London, and other European capitals. I guess, instead of ‘fake news’, we can now say ‘Bloomberg news’, which makes sense [given the circumstances],” (Quote by Dimitry Peskov)
Peskov’s last statement has been a detrimental blow towards Bloomberg’s reputation which is much deserved for such a big mistake. Bloomberg had only mentioned that the publishing error had only occurred due to a technical issue. Something much worst could have occurred from this error and this should be a wake-up call to all the media outlets that are trying to over-exaggerate the tension between these two countries.
The readers should also ensure that they read the content of a headline before sharing it on social media to avoid the spread of misinformation. The political war that has been ongoing for the past 4 months is slowly reaching a stalemate in the hopes that it will be resolved through diplomacy without taking into consideration much input from the media.