ABS-CBN blunder: GMA died… oops, we meant Cory!

James Ryan Jonas

Here’s one news reporting mistake probably some Filipinos wished were true.
In an article published on ABS-CBNNews.com, reference was incorrectly made to “Arroyo (Pres. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo)’s passing” instead of former Pres. Corazon “Cory” Aquino’s.
When it was originally published, the story read:
When Mrs. Arroyo‘s passing was announced at dawn on Saturday, the whole world paused. Condolences to the family of Mrs. Aquino poured from all over the world–both through official statements sent through embassies, made on TV, or posted online. A staggering number of people have been paying their tributes to Mrs. Aquino online, inundating social networking and blog sites. For a good number of those posting online, it is their first time to witness the passing of a president.
Major English and non-English media companies all over the world gave a prominent coverage of Mrs. Arroyo and her international image as a democracy icon. They highlighted how Mrs. Arroyo was able to restore democracy in the Philippines through a bloodless street revolution that soon became the template to boot out corrupt governments in Europe and Latin America.
Yahoo News lifted the story and, as of this writing, still carries the incorrect facts as seen in this screenshot.

The ABS-CBNNews article now has an erratum from the editors saying, In an earlier draft of this article, some names were supposed to refer to Mrs. Aquino, who just passed away. It said “Mrs. Arroyo,” instead. Our apologies.
Some Filipinos chuckled at the mistake but probably secretly wished the story were true.
Related post: Manila Bulletin photo: “Coffin of Gloria Arroyo”

James Ryan Jonas teaches business management, investments, and entrepreneurship at the University of the Philippines (UP). He is also the Executive Director of UP Provident Fund Inc., managing and investing P3.2 Billion ($56.4 Million) worth of retirement funds on behalf of thousands of UP employees.