false report, Associated Press

From: Greg Fisher <greg@truthandfalsity.com>
To: [an actual named person at Yahoo]
Sent: Tuesday, January 13, 2015 2:18 PM
Subject: false report, Associated Press

A 2012 Associated Press item at http://finance.yahoo.com/news/reid-offers-plan-student-loan-131146930.html states, “’The combination of these two proposals will provide sufficient resources to fund both,’ Reid said in his letter to House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.”

Senator McConnell was not the majority leader in 2012.

http://truthandfalsity.com/history/mcconnell/ap.html


Greg Fisher
Truth and Falsity
truthandfalsity.com
Page A2
pagea2.com
The Credit Scoring Site
creditscoring.com
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio  45409-0342
937-681-3224

——————–

Next, came an email from a person on the Yahoo Concierge Team. There was a telephone conversation.

The email referred to the page “Report inaccuracy in Yahoo Finance news article.”

It gives instructions to contact the publisher of an article in error (if the item did not originate with Yahoo itself). The Associated Press corrections email address is published.

The same error exists on the AP website.

——————–

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@truthandfalsity.com]
Sent: Thursday, January 29, 2015 5:30 PM
To: Associated Press corrections
Subject: ERROR, U.S. Senate, Minority Leader

A 2012 Associated Press item at http://finance.yahoo.com/news/reid-offers-plan-student-loan-131146930.html states, “’The combination of these two proposals will provide sufficient resources to fund both,’ Reid said in his letter to House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.”

Senator McConnell was not Majority Leader then.


Greg Fisher
Truth and Falsity
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio 45409-0342

Alchemy

This is either very clever, or evidence of serial incompetence.

The Associated Press (a noun used for lack of a name of one person) writes, “Maria has been placed in temporary care since last week after authorities raided a Roma settlement in central Greece and later discovered that girl was not the child of the couple she was living were not her parents.”

That confounding string of words that looks like a sentence is repeated by the Christian Science Monitor (10/25), Huffington Post (10/25, 10:16 AM), Los Angeles Times (7:53 AM), Time, Yahoo and countless other new outlets.

And Youtube.

Since no author is identified, here is the name of the “Senior Vice President – Executive Editor” of the AP: Kathleen Carroll. Perhaps she signed-off on the article.

The gobledygook is also on the website of the AP, itself (10:16 AM ET). It occurs on pages in the domain hosted2.ap.org, which have newspapers’ names at the top of each.

However, an item with some identical sentences as the first item, on hosted.ap.org, states: “Maria has been placed in temporary care since last week after authorities raided a Roma settlement in central Greece and later discovered that girl was not the child of a Greek Roma couple she was living with.” (10:40 AM EDT)

Astoundingly (as it comes after the nonsense in the first article) the next word string is “The couple has been arrested, and who have been charged for allegedly abducting Maria and document fraud.”

That story contains a by-line, and its gibberish is repeated by the Washington Post, Fox News, CBS and the Times of Mumbai. There are no corrections (or “correctives“) associated with those items on the AP’s correction page.

The news agency also maintains a story, dated June, 2012, that simultaneously identifies (impossibly so) both Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) as the U.S. Senate majority leader.

record of American history by the Senate indicates that only Senator Reid is Majority Leader of that body. The Onion identifies Senator McConnell as “Senate Minority Leader” (emphasis added).

Meanwhile, another inaccurate AP story, on Yahoo, falsely gives Senator McConnell the title, “Senate Majority Leader.” Unlike gibberish or a misspelled name, that is an error of fact.

Wikipedia’s circular reference regarding Daguerre Boulevard du Temple photograph

Despite an onerous set of failsafe measures, Wikipedia has it wrong again. This time, the topic is photography–a technology with a less-than two-hundred year history–and is still developing.

Heh, heh.

Here’s the picture.

The Hokumburg effect

For a time, there was a blog named The Hokumburg Goombah. Wikipedia links to one of its pages, but the page no longer exists. In fact, the blog, itself no longer exists; the home page says, “No posts.”

The hokum in Hokumburg could refer to an item about a very old photograph.  Making the Goombah famous, Robert Krulwich schmoozes

My admiration for Hokumburg jumped another notch when I discovered that on his own blog he’d come up with a city photo older than ours, which he claims may contain the “first photograph of a human being.” Wow! I didn’t check with the experts, but here’s his picture.

Of course, the quote above now links to a Hokumburg page that does not exist–a dead link.

Krulwich also finds Jonah Lehrer’s brilliance “riveting.” And if a subject isn’t riveting enough, Lehrer just makes something up about the person. Lehrer’s publisher gushes, “He graduated from Columbia University and attended Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar.”

That Oxford thing is a big deal.

See how another public radio show was duped in another case.

Wikipedia’s failure

The dead link in Wikipedia was a footnote to a sentence in an article titled, “Boulevard du Temple.”

Previously, the article stated, “A photograph of this street, taken in 1838 by Louis Daguerre, is one of the earliest photographs known, and it is the oldest extant photograph showing a person.[1]

Today, it states, “A photograph of this street, taken in 1838 by Louis Daguerre, is one of the earliest Daguerreotypes known, and it is believed to be the first photograph showing a person,” and there is no footnote giving the source of that alleged fact.

Krulwich scored a link (for a time) in the article, too. Apparently, NPR is a reliable source. That link was titled (note the capitalization), “National Public Radio article on the First Photograph of a Human Ever,” but the title of the Krulwich piece contains a weasely question mark and has different wording: “First Photo Of A Human Being Ever?

Mais, est-ce vraiment le premier?

The copy of the photograph on Wikipedia was taken from the book “The Photography Book” which contains a short discussion of the photograph “Boulevard du Temple” (page 105).  However, the discussion makes no mention of it being the first or earliest anything. The book was first published in 1997 and makes a great conversation piece (as does this sentence) for a coffee table.

George Mason University’s scrappy History News Network contains this text, allegedly from Hokumburg: “But this anonymous shadowy man is the first human being to ever have his picture taken.”

A person identifying himself as Gig Thurmond, Editor, The Hokumburg Goombah,  complains about HNN’s record of another post regarding the photograph. Further, Thumond states, flippantly:

Here’s the secret: We found it on Wikipedia.

Or maybe we googled something like ‘old photographs,’ we can’t remember for sure.

But if it was Wikipedia, then that makes it a circular reference; i.e., Wikipedia cites Thumond while Thurmond cites Wikipedia. The phenomenon can be deadly for facts (search for the word proliferation). And if it was the second explanation, then there is no source. Thurmond used sarcasm, and subsequently–lest there be no misunderstanding–even used sarcasm to identify it as sarcasm. But now that serious descriptions (with superlatives no less) of “Boulevard” by Daguerre is de rigeur, claims of its greatness are fair game for scrutiny.

Talk about your anonymous shadowy figures!

Wikipedia’s constructs

Wikipedia has guidelines, rules, standards, policies, practices, proposals, procedures, principles and pillars, pal.  The Five Pillars fall under Principles.

Wikipedia’s Five Pillars:

  • Wikipedia is an encyclopedia.
  • Wikipedia is written from a neutral point of view.
  • Wikipedia is free content that anyone can edit, use, modify, and distribute.
  • Editors should interact with each other in a respectful and civil manner.
  • Wikipedia does not have firm rules.

So, those are the pillars (when this was written), at least until they are not the pillars. They used to be “unchangeable.” Only in the Wikipedia universe could a sentence like that exist.  Or this: “Wikipedia is not for things made up one day.”

You can’t make this up. And, Wikipedia says that you can’t change anything in Wikipedia, anyway. But don’t be surprised if the last sentence contains a dead link someday.

The first rule of Fight Club: You do not talk about Fight Club.  The second rule of Fight Club: You do not talk about…

But, forget about all that. “Be bold,” brave Wikipedians [aka, potentially, the human race]!  According to Wikipedia, itself, “You do not need to read any rules before contributing to Wikipedia.”

Verifiability

Wikipedia’s rules are more specific than its Pillars regarding reliable sources and verifiability. Well, OK, they are now (see the fifth Pillar (as it stands today)).  If you find that something here does not square with Wikipedia’s description of itself, just log on (or, indeed, nevermind logging on, just surf) to Wikipedia and change it.

However, that could be seen as “gaming the system.” But, you can change that part, too, etc., etc.

Sometimes it is easier to describe what something is not, rather than what it is. Of course everything is something. It’s just that, sometimes, those who create things can’t bring themselves to say what the things really are. So, they describe what they aren’t. And, of course (you guessed it), Wikipedia even has a list of what Wikipedia is not.

Listverse

Being first is important.  We want–we really, really want–to identify the first photograph of a person (and the first of anything). But, inventors have a lot on their minds, and preserving evidence of a historical moment may not be a priority. Even as important an artifact it was, the Wright brothers 1900 glider was abandoned. On the other hand, a successor to Daguerre’s machine recorded another significant Wright event.

Regarding the Daguerre, in one of its top-ten lists, Listverse states, “This is the first photograph ever taken that captures the image of a man.”

That is dated January, 2009, over a year before Hokumburg’s thing came along. There is no reference, of course.  But then again, there is this thing about Charlie Chaplain.

Unfortunately, Chaplain is not alive to protest.  Indeed, what would Louis Daguerre think about this?

CompareCards.com expert asks to be interviewed again

Previous correspondence with CompareCards.com

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@pagea2.com]
Sent: Wednesday, August 29, 2012 11:58 AM
To: Chris Mettler, founder and CEO, CompareCards.com
Subject: RE: Interview Inquiry, myths

See http://www.pagea2.com/?p=390.

One of your videos, “CREDIT SCORES 101,” states, “Today, credit scores play a part in everything from getting a home, owning a car, to getting a job.”

Born of three years of following that myth, Page A2 is about misinformation, its consequences, and how media deal with correcting and counteracting it.

There is no evidence to support either of your claims.  Over two months ago, you said that you would make a correction to one of them, but you did not.  What happened?

My name is not Gregg.


Greg Fisher
Page A2
pagea2.com
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio  45409-0342

From: Chris Mettler
Sent: Tuesday, August 28, 2012 11:33 AM
To: Greg Fisher
Subject: Re: Interview Inquiry, insight

We still doing an interview?

From: Chris Mettler
Sent: Monday, June 11, 2012 5:03 PM
To: Greg Fisher
Cc: Chrissy Bunkley, marketing & communications Specialist, CompareCards.com
Subject: Re: Interview Inquiry, insight

Hey Gregg-

Thanks for your question … I’ll just respond with what I believe I know …

When I made the below statement, I’m making an assumption that credit scorers don’t like to really see balance carry of above 30% in a given month. Obviously, the higher this number, the more chance of a lower credit score. I used 30% as a good threshold to stay under.

So, assuming that about 30% of your overall credit score is based on “Balances or Amount Owed”, I would estimate that 10% of the 30% number is attributed to the number of accounts with balances. Multiple revolving accounts with balances might signal that someone makes purchases beyond their means if they can’t pay this off each month.

Also, my wife grew up in Oakwood and loves Dayton – a throwback spot in this country – go Flyers!

Chris

From: Greg Fisher
Sent: Monday, June 11, 2012 12:25 PM
To: Chris Mettler, founder and CEO, CompareCards.com
Cc: Chrissy Bunkley, marketing & communications Specialist, CompareCards.com
Subject: RE: Interview Inquiry, insight

You wrote: “The overall score is tabulated using several different categories of information that are each weighted depending upon their financial importance to lenders. Some account for 15 percent of your score, for instance, while other categories of your credit performance are worth more than that. Once of the biggies is the amount[SIC] owed, or in other words how much debt you are carrying compared to how much credit you have offered to you. According to Fair Isaac, credit utilization is a key factor in the amount[SIC] owed category – and that category makes up 30 percent of your score.”

If “amount[SIC] owed, or in other words how much debt you are carrying compared to how much credit you have offered to you” “and that category makes up 30 percent of your score,” then what percentage is made up by the Number of accounts with balances?


Greg Fisher
Page A
pagea2.com
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio  45409-0342

From: Chrissy Bunkley
Sent: Friday, June 08, 2012 4:04 PM
To: greg@creditscoring.com
Subject: Interview Inquiry

Hi Greg,

I’m reading over the Credit Score blog and notice that you feature a wide variety of topics on all things credit score and finance. I hope you don’t mind that I am using the email address that I found from one of your previous posts in where you personally contacted Rubert Murdoch and called him out for misreports of credit scores and job candidacy.  You’ve got some guts and I like it!

Let me back up, I’m Chrissy from CompareCards.com, an online credit card comparison website.  I’m writing to you because I’d like to offer you the opportunity to interview our founder and CEO, Chris Mettler.  Chris has been educating consumers on credit card trends since 2005.  His wealth of knowledge in financial responsibility is both informative and actionable for consumers and entrepreneurs alike.

Chris has been featured and interviewed in a number of news outlets, which you can find here: http://www.comparecards.com/in-the-news

If you are interested in this idea, I can connect you with Chris directly, who would be happy to share his insight with your readership.

Please let me know if you have any questions or would like to hear more about this opportunity.

Best,
Chrissy

———-

Chrissy Bunkley
Marketing & Communications Specialist
www.comparecards.com

CompareCards.com did not make the correction

Subsequent message from Comparecards.com

From: Chris Mettler
Sent: Tuesday, June 19, 2012 10:21 AM
To: Greg Fisher
Subject: Re: Interview Inquiry, insight, key factor III

Sure

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@pagea2.com]
Sent: Monday, June 18, 2012 2:32 PM
To: Chris Mettler, founder and CEO, CompareCards.com
Subject: RE: Interview Inquiry, insight, key factor III

Will you make a correction?

From: Chris Mettler
Sent: Monday, June 18, 2012 1:20 PM
To: Greg Fisher
Subject: Re: Interview Inquiry, insight, key factor II

I don’t know anyone at Fair Isaac that said credit utilization was a key factor in the amounts owed category, but it has been assumed from many sources that this is a key factor in determining an individuals credit score. I believe this assumption to be correct given that a high credit utilization (or someone with multiple credit accounts with high credit utilization) would infer to a potential creditor that someone has a higher probability of living beyond their current income target – hence a riskier credit profile.

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@pagea2.com]
Sent: Monday, June 18, 2012 12:06 PM
To: Chris Mettler, founder and CEO, CompareCards.com
Subject: RE: Interview Inquiry, insight, key factor II

Who at Fair Isaac said—or where did the company state in writing—that credit utilization is a key factor in the Amounts Owed category?

From: Chris Mettler
Sent: Monday, June 18, 2012 11:18 AM
To: Greg Fisher
Subject: Re: Interview Inquiry, short

Nope, just didn’t no where we were headed with this … I understand this now …

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@pagea2.com]
Sent: Thursday, June 14, 2012 5:10 PM
To: Chris Mettler, founder and CEO, CompareCards.com
Subject: RE: Interview Inquiry, short

You only (sort of?) answered two questions.

Is the interview over?

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@pagea2.com]
Sent: Wednesday, June 13, 2012 9:31 AM
To: Chris Mettler, founder and CEO, CompareCards.com
Subject: RE: Interview Inquiry, insight, nearly

Fair Isaac has revealed some things about the so-called “credit utilization” ratio, but not what you claim.  When the company explains FICO scoring to a general audience, it applies general weights to major data categories such as, “Amounts Owed is 30 percent of a typical consumer’s score.”  It doesn’t break that weighting into finer parts for individual factors, both to avoid unintentionally misleading the public and to protect the model’s proprietary information.

However, recently, one outlet claimed that Fair Isaac said, “The credit utilization ratio is nearly 30% of a person’s credit score.”

Similarly, you made a statement regarding the importance of a factor, and attribute the information in it to Fair Isaac.  You appear to have knowledge of a statement by the keeper of the secret credit score formula that further defines it.

From: Chris Mettler
Sent: Tuesday, June 12, 2012 1:14 PM
To: Greg Fisher
Subject: Re: Interview Inquiry, insight, key factor

Not sure where all this is going

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@pagea2.com]
Sent: Tuesday, June 12, 2012 1:00 PM
To: Chris Mettler, founder and CEO, CompareCards.com
Subject: RE: Interview Inquiry, insight, key factor

Who at Fair Isaac said—or where did the company state in writing—that credit utilization is a key factor in the Amounts Owed category?

From: Chris Mettler
Sent: Tuesday, June 12, 2012 10:58 AM
To: Greg Fisher
Subject: Re: Interview Inquiry, insight, 15 percent category

Length of Credit Score?

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@pagea2.com]
Sent: Monday, June 11, 2012 5:22 PM
To: Chris Mettler, founder and CEO, CompareCards.com
Subject: RE: Interview Inquiry, insight, 15 percent category

What is the name of another category that accounts for 15 percent of a FICO score?

From: Chris Mettler
Sent: Monday, June 11, 2012 5:03 PM
To: Greg Fisher
Cc: Chrissy Bunkley, marketing & communications Specialist, CompareCards.com
Subject: Re: Interview Inquiry, insight

Hey Gregg-

Thanks for your question … I’ll just respond with what I believe I know …

When I made the below statement, I’m making an assumption that credit scorers don’t like to really see balance carry of above 30% in a given month. Obviously, the higher this number, the more chance of a lower credit score. I used 30% as a good threshold to stay under.

So, assuming that about 30% of your overall credit score is based on “Balances or Amount Owed”, I would estimate that 10% of the 30% number is attributed to the number of accounts with balances. Multiple revolving accounts with balances might signal that someone makes purchases beyond their means if they can’t pay this off each month.

Also, my wife grew up in Oakwood and loves Dayton – a throwback spot in this country – go Flyers!

Chris

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@pagea2.com]
Sent: Monday, June 11, 2012 12:25 PM
To: Chris Mettler, founder and CEO, CompareCards.com
Cc: Chrissy Bunkley, marketing & communications Specialist, CompareCards.com
Subject: RE: Interview Inquiry, insight

You wrote: “The overall score is tabulated using several different categories of information that are each weighted depending upon their financial importance to lenders. Some account for 15 percent of your score, for instance, while other categories of your credit performance are worth more than that. Once of the biggies is the amount[SIC] owed, or in other words how much debt you are carrying compared to how much credit you have offered to you. According to Fair Isaac, credit utilization is a key factor in the amount[SIC] owed category – and that category makes up 30 percent of your score.”

If “amount[SIC] owed, or in other words how much debt you are carrying compared to how much credit you have offered to you” “and that category makes up 30 percent of your score,” then what percentage is made up by the Number of accounts with balances?


Greg Fisher
Page A
pagea2.com
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio  45409-0342

From: Chrissy Bunkley
Sent: Friday, June 08, 2012 4:04 PM
To: greg@creditscoring.com
Subject: Interview Inquiry

Hi Greg,

I’m reading over the Credit Score blog and notice that you feature a wide variety of topics on all things credit score and finance. I hope you don’t mind that I am using the email address that I found from one of your previous posts in where you personally contacted Rubert Murdoch and called him out for misreports of credit scores and job candidacy.  You’ve got some guts and I like it!

Let me back up, I’m Chrissy from CompareCards.com, an online credit card comparison website.  I’m writing to you because I’d like to offer you the opportunity to interview our founder and CEO, Chris Mettler.  Chris has been educating consumers on credit card trends since 2005.  His wealth of knowledge in financial responsibility is both informative and actionable for consumers and entrepreneurs alike.

Chris has been featured and interviewed in a number of news outlets, which you can find here: http://www.comparecards.com/in-the-news

If you are interested in this idea, I can connect you with Chris directly, who would be happy to share his insight with your readership.

Please let me know if you have any questions or would like to hear more about this opportunity.

Best,
Chrissy

———-

Chrissy Bunkley
Marketing & Communications Specialist
www.comparecards.com

Chicago Tribune’s uncorrected errors

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@pagea2.com]
Sent: Wednesday, June 06, 2012 1:38 PM
To: Sam Zell, Tribune Company; Sam Zell, Tribune Company (alt); Corrections desk, Chicago Tribune
Cc: Jane Hirt, vice president, managing editor, Chicago Tribune; CTC-YourMoney; Margaret Holt, standards editor, Chicago Tribune; Anthony Sprauve, US Consumer / FICO Score Public Relations, Fair Isaac; Craig Watts, Fair Isaac; Northwest Chicago Film Society; Nina Metz, reporter, film, TV and theater, Chicago Tribune; Daniel Bortz, reporter/editor, Personal Finance, U.S. News & World Report; Mortimer B. Zuckerman, chairman, Executive Committee, editor-in-chief, U.S. News & World Report (via Liz Putze); Julie Diop; Ilyce Glink; Luke Knowles, FreeShipping.org; Kate Forgach, blogger, FreeShipping.org; Felix Salmon, blogger, Reuters; Katie Leslie, reporter, Atlanta Journal-Constitution; Marcus K. Garner, reporter, Atlanta Journal-Constitution; Jane Scholz, editor, McClatchy Tribune Information Services ; Gary B. Pruitt, chairman, president and CEO, McClatchy Company (via E. Lintecum); Gerould W. Kern, senior vice-president and editor, Chicago Tribune
Subject: RE: credit score, utilization ratio, Chicago Tribune II, You can’t have it both ways

Not so fast, Mr. Zell.

The numbers you use for credibility are also your downfall.  While you may be satisfied with the column, you did not say that it is accurate.  Who was your source for that part of the column?

Now, here is the big question:  If 30 percent of the FICO score depends on the so-called credit utilization ratio (an inaccurate notion), then what percentage depends on the Number of accounts with balances?

A long time ago, I spent a year dealing with that issue and I am sure that the percentage is a positive number.  According to your logic, however, it is zero.

Same for Amount owing on specific types of accounts.

Same for Lack of a specific type of balance, in some cases.

Same for Amount owing on accounts.

So, your response fails to address a simple math problem.  The ratio accounts for something less than 30 percent of the score, so your statement is incorrect.

The impossibility of your utilization ratio claim notwithstanding, perhaps you could discuss with Fair Isaac (to whom you refer as FICO) your multiple inaccurate articles about employers using credit scores.  The company has no expertise on the matter (since, to my knowledge, it does not sell consumer reports to anybody but consumers), however, it has significant influence over media.  Fair Isaac certainly has Reuters snowed.  Asked to explain its public statement about pre-employment screening, Fair Isaac replied, “The mention you cited from the myFICO video clip was based on anecdotal information gleaned from public sources such as published articles.”

Perhaps they got it from you.  Years after the FICO score company stated that employers use credit scores, that claim—based on a silly rumor—has been debunked.  But it lives on at the Chicago Tribune.

In one place you published, “Because employers and landlords have access to the scores, it can determine who gets an apartment or even a job.”

On the contrary, in another place, you published: “Similar to the reports that a consumer can obtain for free each year through credit-reporting agencies, employers receive a report that lists debt. The reports do not, however, give an applicant’s credit score.”

Yet, in another place, you published, “When you decide to purchase a car or house, or even rent an apartment or apply for a job, your credit score matters.”

Consumer reporting agency Experian states: “Employers never get a credit score. Unfortunately, that is a very common misperception.”

There are other examples.  In one, a columnist made an honorable correction in a subsequent column (dated Independence Day, no less), but it doesn’t seem to have hit da Trib (the date of the correction ironic in light of your abuse of our First Amendment rights).

Who are your sources?

Based on information that you continue to maintain on your website, I might have caught one of the few trains that go through Ohio (and in the middle of the night) to Chicago to see the film “The Halliday Brand” only to find that tonight’s screening had been canceled.

You published your correction on another page.

What is your correction policy?

Consider the citizens.


Greg Fisher
Page A2
pagea2.com
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio  45409-0342

 

 

From: CTC-YourMoney [mailto:YourMoney@tribune.com]
Sent: Monday, June 04, 2012 5:04 PM
To: Greg Fisher
Subject: RE: credit score, utilization ratio, Chicago Tribune II

Dear Mr. Fisher:

After discussing your concerns with FICO, we’re satisfied with Carolyn Bigda’s column. Thank you for writing.

Kind regards,

Pete Reinwald
Content editor
Consumer finance
Chicago Tribune
Tribune Newspapers

[previous email]

 

Credit score viral rumor published by Tribune furthered by credit score company, itself

[next email]

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@pagea2.com]
Sent: Monday, June 04, 2012 11:33 AM
To: Sam Zell, Tribune Company; Sam Zell, Tribune Company (alt)
Cc: László Hajmási, DailyRumor.org; Barry Paperno, FICO; Craig Watts, Fair Isaac; John Ulzheimer, The Ulzheimer Group; Jane Hirt, vice president, managing editor, Chicago Tribune; Gary Weitman, SVP, corporate relations, Tribune Company; Elliot Raphaelson, columnist, Tribune Media Services, Tribune Company; Carolyn Bigda, columnist, Chicago Tribune; Gerould W. Kern, senior vice-president and editor, Chicago Tribune
Subject: RE: credit score, utilization ratio, Chicago Tribune II

Credit score expert John Ulzheimer calls the overstatement of the importance of credit utilization ratio a myth.  Now there is a copy of your inaccurate article on—get this—DailyRumor.org.

Oh, the irony.

And, there is even a link to your piece on the myFICO Facebook page.

Oh, the ultimate irony.


Greg Fisher
Page A2
pagea2.com
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio  45409-0342

 

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@pagea2.com]
Sent: Friday, May 18, 2012 3:57 PM
To: Carolyn Bigda, columnist, Chicago Tribune
Subject: credit score, utilization ratio, Chicago Tribune

In error, you wrote, “Sixty-five percent of your score depends on just two things — your payment history and the amount you borrow compared with the total credit available to you (what’s known as a credit utilization ratio).”

That may be what Wikipedia says, but you are incorrect.  See http://www.myfico.com/CreditEducation/WhatsInYourScore.aspx.  The proportions of credit lines used and installment loan amounts still owing are only two of 6 items in the category that makes up 30 percent of the score.  Indeed, the number of accounts with balances is in that category, but has nothing to do with any ratio.

Where will the correction appear?


Greg Fisher
Page A2
pagea2.com
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio  45409-0342

 

Presto change-o! – NPR corrections

NPR corrected (see May 8) the error of a guest in one story, but merely changed the headline and online page copy of another.  Presto change-o!  It’s like magic.

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@pagea2.com]
Sent: Wednesday, May 23, 2012 8:04 AM
To: Gary Knell, president and CEO, NPR
Cc: Michel Martin, host, Tell Me More, NPR; Edward Schumacher-Matos, ombudsman, NPR; Edward Schumacher-Matos, ombudsman, NPR; Ombudsman, NPR; NPR Corrections; Portia Robertson Migas, supervising senior editor, NPR; Alicia Montgomery, senior editor, Tell Me More, NPR
Subject: RE: credit score, employers, NPR, and poof! It disappeared

You changed the 2009 headline from “Low Credit Scores Affect Job Applicants” to “Bad Credit Reports Affect Job Applicants.”

Someone commenting wrote, “Using credit scores as part of Job Selection[SIC] is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong[SIC].”

Sorting the comments by the most recommend puts the catch-22 meme at the top: “Of course one reason to have a low credit score is unemployment or simply being a recent college graduate. It’s a bit of a catch-22.”

The NPR Ethics Handbook states: “We have a simple standard: Errors of fact do not stand uncorrected. If we get it wrong, we’ll admit it.”

Where do you admit it?

[previous correspondence]

 

FICO 8 credit score distribution, 25 percent, misinformation

From: Greg Fisher
Sent: Tuesday, May 15, 2012 11:02 AM
To: Rob Berger, Dough Roller
Subject: credit score distribution, Dough Roller

You wrote, “According to Fair Isaac, the creator of the FICO credit score, more than 25 percent of consumers who have active credit files (about 43 million people) have FICO scores of 599 and below.”

The chart you included indicates that less than 25 percent have scores of 599 or below.

However, there is a greater problem.


Greg Fisher
Page A2
pagea2.com
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio  45409-0342

NPR replies regarding headline error

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@pagea2.com]
Sent: Wednesday, May 02, 2012 3:02 PM
To: Gary Knell, president and CEO, NPR
Cc: Michel Martin, host, Tell Me More, NPR; Edward Schumacher-Matos, ombudsman, NPR; Edward Schumacher-Matos, ombudsman, NPR; Ombudsman, NPR; NPR Corrections; Portia Robertson Migas, NPR; Alicia Montgomery, NPR; Vicki McIvor, Take 3 Management (representing Alvin Hall)
Subject: RE: credit score, employers, NPR, Tell Me More, the sooner the better, 2009-2012, CRA

Your host takes it incorrectly.  I don’t disagree with anybody about any alleged inappropriate use of credit scores by employers.  That is because employers do not use credit scores, inappropriately or otherwise; they cannot even obtain them.

According to national consumer reporting agency Experian: “Experian’s Employment Insight report includes similar information about loans and credit cards that is listed in the credit report. It does not include year of birth, spouse reference, account number or credit score, which are irrelevant to hiring decisions.”

The interview did not take place more than three years ago.

Consider the citizens.

 

From: Michel Martin, host, Tell Me More, NPR
Sent: Wednesday, May 02, 2012 1:40 PM
To: ‘Greg Fisher’; Edward Schumacher-Matos
Cc: Portia Robertson Migas; Alicia Montgomery
Subject: RE: credit score, employers, NPR, Tell Me More, the sooner the better, 2009-2012

Mr. Fisher I’m good but not that good. i don’t remember this interview that took place more than three years ago,  I do not remember your objection  and i do not remember any interaction i may have had with you. I take it you disagree with Alvin Hall’s point that credit scores are being used by employers for reasons that he considers inapproppriate. I’ll leave it toour management team to determine whether this warrants a correction. it seem to me this is Alvin Hall’s opinion and he is entitled to it. but we’ll look ino it. a decision won’t rest solely on my opinion if that helps.

[previous correspondence]