Oops! New York Times Accidentally Publishes Unedited Keystone Story

It is every journalist’s nightmare. May the media gods spare TPM.

But the New York Times on Tuesday accidentally published an unedited version of a story about the Senate’s vote on the Keystone pipeline at about 4:40 p.m. ET — or about an hour before the vote was scheduled to take place.

The Time’s politics account tweeted out the link, which soon brought good-natured japing from other reporters. If nothing else, it provided readers with a brief glimpse behind the curtain of how the news stories they read get made.

The article was filled with journalistic jargon, like “TK” for vote tallies to be filled in and “B Matter” for the already established backstory. Two versions had been written — one for if the bill failed, the other if it passed. The story has since been fixed, but the screenshots live forever.

D.C. reporters were, as they say, on it.

(If you want an explanation for how it happened, a Times editor laid it out to Politico).

Dear Reader,

When we asked recently what makes TPM different from other outlets, readers cited factors like honesty, curiosity, transparency, and our vibrant community. They also pointed to our ability to report on important stories and trends long before they are picked up by mainstream outlets; our ability to contextualize information within the arc of history; and our focus on the real-world consequences of the news.

Our unique approach to reporting and presenting the news, however, wouldn’t be possible without our readers’ support. That’s not just marketing speak, it’s true: our work would literally not be possible without readers deciding to become members. Not only does member support account for more than 80% of TPM’s revenue, our members have helped us build an engaged and informed community. Many of our best stories were born from reader tips and valuable member feedback.

We do what other news outlets can’t or won’t do because our members’ support gives us real independence.

If you enjoy reading TPM and value what we do, become a member today.

TPM Staff
Latest Livewire
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Director of Audience:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: