UK Tabloid Pays 'Substantial Sum' To Take2 After Totally Made Up Story About Grand Theft Auto
from the but-is-that-a-good-thing? dept
A few months ago, we wrote about how a journalist at the Daily Star apparently totally made up a story claiming that Take2 Interactive was going to create a new version of the videogame Grand Theft Auto, based on the headline-hogging story in the UK of Raoul Moat, the guy who shot three people and himself, including his ex-girlfriend, her new boyfriend and a policeman (the new boyfriend and Moat himself died). The journalist seemed to base the story on Photoshopped images that some random person had made online of such a game, which was obviously a joke. He never checked with anyone involved at Take2 or Rockstar... but did check with the grandmother of Moat's ex-girlfriend, telling her (falsely) that such a game was being created and getting her reaction. What was even more ridiculous, was that when called on it, the reporter, Jerry Lawton, went on Facebook, and started insulting everyone who pointed out that the story was clearly bogus. It took a while, but The Daily Star finally pulled the story down, and admitted "We made no attempt to check the accuracy of the story before publication..."
Apparently, after all this happened, Take2 sued for libel, and so The Daily Star has now coughed up "a substantial sum" to the company to make amends (thanks to cc for the heads up). As ridiculous as the original story was, I'm not sure Take2 really deserves "a substantial sum" for it. Most people who would actually buy a version of GTA knew that the story was false, but that's what you get with UK libel laws, I guess. As another report on this story points out: "It should be noted that the Star, owned by Richard Desmond, has a history of publishing false stories and carrying apologies afterwards." So perhaps my original inclination was correct.