On Sunday, Rolling Stone retracted an article it published in November about a gang rape at a University of Virginia fraternity.
The magazine also released a report it commissioned from the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism that showed the writer, Sabrina Rubin Erdely, and editors failed to verify details and made countless other errors, The New York Times reports. The piece, "A Rape on Campus," was about a young woman identified as "Jackie," who told Erdely that in September 2012, she was raped by seven men in a dark room at a frat party. The Columbia report found that the magazine failed in "basic, even routine journalistic practice," with Erdely not providing the fraternity, Phi Kappa Psi, with enough information for them to respond to Jackie's accusations. Erdely also quoted Jackie's recollections of conversations with friends, but did not reach out to speak with them independently.
Rolling Stone publisher Jann S. Wenner said Jackie was "a really expert fabulist storyteller," and that Erdely, managing editor Will Dana, and the article's editor, Sean Woods, will all keep their jobs. Erdely apologized on Sunday to her readers and colleagues, as well as "any victims of sexual assault who may feel fearful as a result of my article." Catherine Garcia