Interestingly, commenters on the site have shifted from near-universal praise of Deadspin’s reporting chops to something far less settled. Citing the above judgment, one commenter called Deadspin’s tone “corrosive and cancerous” (mattmckinney). Some have started to link to mainstream media reports as alternatives to Deadspin’s coverage. DawgCorleone added, “Just admit you didn’t get the entire story right and move on. The more you try to discredit ESPN, the more foolish you look.”

This time, it seems, by delving into reporting in the first place, Deadspin opened itself up to the same criticism it usually doles out so savagely well. With the Te’o story, after that first, great post, Deadspin created what it usually despises most from others: half-assed work. Or as commenter OaklandsOwn put it when commenting on one of the Te’o posts:

DEADSPIN

E SP N

Just saying,,,,,,


 

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Scott Berinato is a senior editor at Harvard Business Review