https://hotair.com/john-s-2/2021/09/03/usa-todays-fact-check-on-biden-checking-his-watch-didnt-go-well-n413658

Wednesday USA Today fact checked claims that Joe Biden had checked his watch during the dignified transfer ceremony for the service members killed in Afghanistan by an ISIS-K suicide bomber. Here’s the original headline for that story as preserved in the Internet Archive:

From the story itself:

For Biden, he did appear to check his watch during his visit to Dover Air Force Base. But he did so after the dignified transfer ceremony was over…

Based on our research, we rate PARTLY FALSE the claim that Trump saluted the caskets of fallen U.S. service members, while Biden checked his watch. The pictures are real, but they don’t accurately summarize the two events. The way Biden honored the 11 caskets presented at Dover Air Force Base, with a hand over his heart, was similar to how Trump paid respects to fallen service members during his presidency. Biden checked his watch, but he did so after the ceremony had ended.

The author of that fact check also published some tweets about it Wendesday.

Today, however, the fact check has been revised significantly. Here’s the new headline.

And the revised content of the story opens with this correction:

Corrections & Clarifications: This story was updated Sept. 2 to note that Biden checked his watch multiple times at the dignified transfer event, including during the ceremony itself. The rating on this claim has been changed from partly false to missing context…

While Biden did pay his respects to the fallen service members, photos and video show he also checked his watch during the ceremony.

Associated Press photos taken 10 minutes apart show Biden checking his watch during the ceremony. Another photo from the Agence France-Presse, distributed by Getty Images, also shows Biden glancing at his watch, although it’s unclear what time the image was taken…

USA TODAY was unable to independently verify exactly how many times Biden looked at his watch…

Based on our research, we rate MISSING CONTEXT the claim that Trump saluted the caskets of fallen U.S. service members, while Biden checked his watch. The way Biden honored the 11 caskets presented at Dover Air Force Base, with a hand over his heart, was similar to how Trump paid respects to fallen service members during his presidency. However, Biden did check his watch at least three times, according to photos and video reviewed by USA TODAY. Several family members of fallen service members who attended the ceremony have criticized Biden for checking his watch.

And here’s the author’s clarification on Twitter:

Journalists do make mistakes. The problem in the last few years is that the mistakes are overwhelmingly in one direction, i.e. resistance journalism leads to mistakes that often blame Republicans unfairly and/or defend Democrats inaccurately.

I’d be a lot more willing to accept this was a genuine mistake if I could understand how it happened. Did Funke just assume that the story must be false because conservatives were talking about it online? Why didn’t he find the multiple photos of Biden checking his watch before he published the fact check? It’s just a mystery how this happens.

Update: Snopes also corrected their story on this.

CORRECTION [3 September 2021]: This article was changed from Mixture to True after a photograph was uncovered showing Biden checking his watch for a second time during this ceremony. The article originally addressed the claim that Biden checked his watch 13 times but was changed to “multiple times” to better address the most common rumors about this incident.

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