Before Sarah Palin's book, "Going Rogue," was released to the public, the Associated Press published a much-heralded fact check that detailed where her claims didn't line up with reality. It was possible in part because the AP snagged a copy of Palin's book early.
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There's a lot to how the AP found the books - and beat their competitors - detailed in a weekly internal newsletter to the company's 4,000 employees and obtained by Talking Points Memo.
Mike Oreskes, a senior managing editor, offers staffers a description of the AP's own work tracking down and fact checking the book and it reads like a spy thriller:
"The AP was determined to get the first copy," Oreskes wrote, detailing how the writers learned a store had "inadvertently placed the book on sale five days before its official Nov. 17 release date."
"They bought a copy, ripped it from its spine and scanned it into the system so it could be read and electronically searched," he wrote. "A NewsNow moved within 40 minutes, followed quickly by multiple leads as details were gleaned from the 413-page manuscript."
Paul Colford, director of media relations for the AP, said the latest edition of "Beat of the Week" newsletter lauding the reporters who tracked down "Going Rogue" showcased the wire service was "dogged enough" to find the book and "be able to echo what was in it before it was in wider circulation."
"There's no greater fox hunt in newsgathering around the publication of a big book than the rush to be the first to get it and say what it says," Colford told TPMDC.
In the newsletter, the AP congratulates the two reporters who found the book for their work, and jabs a bit at the competition. The reporters will share a $500 cash prize awarded to the best beats at the AP each week.
Read the "Going Rogue" portion of the weekly newsletter - which also lauds other reporters' unrelated works - after the jump.