Adding to concern over Logan doing this story is that Threshold Books, which published The Embassy House, specializes in conservative nonfiction. Its authors are notable Republicans: Glenn Beck, Karl Rove, Dick Cheney, Lynne Cheney, Mary Cheney, and Sean Hannity. Republican consultant Mary Matalin is its chief editor. None are friendly to the Obama administration, which has taken considerable heat from the GOP for Benghazi.

Right after the flawed episode aired, Republicans seized on this as another example of why the Obama administration must give more details of what happened that night. US Sen. Lindsay Graham threatened to hold up all Obama administration nominations until all Benghazi survivors appear before Congress.

The fallout from publicizing Davies’ fabricated account is huge. Logan and 60 Minutes have a black eye that won’t soon be forgotten. Threshold Editions will lose money because it had to pull Davies’ book off shelves.

“The route Threshold is taking means destroying copies in stores, in wholesalers, and in your own inventory,” said book agent Eric Nelson, formerly of John Wiley & Sons. “Everything about this book will likely have to be written off as a loss. Even aside from the advance, which the publisher probably wouldn’t sue the author to recoup, this could be hundreds of thousands of dollars.”

Slate got bloodied too. It published an excerpt from Davies’ book and then had to admit they don’t believe it’s true.

Publishers are never going to routinely factcheck books, but if TV networks are going to promo a book, they definitely should.

 

Alicia Shepard (@ombudsman) is a media writer who recently spent a year as a visiting professor at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas. Previously she was NPR's ombudsman.