Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Stupid reporting of a stupid story

In this article from Slashdot using a PC Magazine story as a source, they claim that a new law reqires that every PC repair shop in Texas have a Private Investigator's license. The PC mag story links to a CW33 TV post, which in turn leads to a Daily Texan article that finally explains a bit of the meat. The best story I've found is from the Austin American-Statesman, mentioned in the CW33 story, but not linked.

The actual law appears to be overly strict, but it is about analyzing data forensically, not in repairing a PC. There may be some cases that a shop would have to refuse, in order to remain technically compliant with this law but it is a far cry from "all repair shops need a PI license".

Slashdot can be excused, they aren't even claiming to be journalists. The rest of these stories (except the Statesman) either deliberately sensationalized (especially the CW33 that was obviously aware of the Statesman story) or at least neglected even minimal fact checking before sounding the alarms.

It would be really nice of journalists would occasionally say that on further investigation, there's no real story here.

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