News ·

New York Times Issues Official Correction To M.I.A. Story

A few days after the singer blew up at the New York Times on her Twitter/website for the scathing profile the paper published about her in its Sunday magazine, the New York Times has issued an official correction to writer Lynn Hirschberg's profile, saying:

The cover article in The Times Magazine on Sunday profiled the singer and political activist M.I.A. While discussing her efforts to draw attention to the civil war in her home country, Sri Lanka, she was quoted as saying: “I wasn’t trying to be like Bono. He’s not from Africa — I’m from there. I’m tired of pop stars who say, ‘Give peace a chance.’ I’d rather say, ‘Give war a chance.’ The whole point of going to the Grammys was to say, ‘Hey, 50,000 people are gonna die next month, and here’s your opportunity to help.’ And no one did.”


While M.I.A. did make those remarks, she did not make the entire statement at the same point in the interview, or in the order in which it was presented. The part that begins, “The whole point of going to the Grammys,” up to the end of the quotation, actually came first. The part that begins, “I wasn’t trying to be like Bono,” and ends, “Give war a chance,” came later in the same interview. The article should have made clear that the two quotations came from different parts of the interview.

I guess it's understandable that the Times would issue the response to this part, but how about the total entrapment thing that happened with the truffle fries? Hirschberg is on tape ordering them, and then she wrote the story like M.I.A. only eats fries made out of truffles. It was pretty weak. Still though, I can't imagine it was easy for the Times to admit an error. They hate corrections over there. [Daily Swarm

DOOM, MF Doom - MF DOOM Releasing Live LP, 'Expektoration,' This Fall Smashing Pumpkins Smashing Pumpkins Announce 'Intimate' U.S. Tour


/site_media/uploads/images/users/daba/me-bermudajpg.jpg Daba

I'm trying to not get involved in all of this nonsense, but that truffle fries thing really pissed me off as a reporter. That is all.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/Andrew_Martin/me.jpg Andrew_Martin

I'm still totally with the NY Times. This isn't really a correction, no one was misquoted or denied saying these things. All news stories will have a bias and a perspective. And overall, this story is not too horrible to MIA - there are a few parts that are bit much, but it's a fair piece. MIA is acting like a complete child about it and it's absurd that the Times has to issue a "correction." A single story can't explain the context of every single quote and statement in it for two paragraphs. MIA is a complete hypocrite, famewhore and child. It's just surprising it took this long for people to figure it out. At the very most the quote in question needs a [...] at some point. It doesn't change the absolutely ridiculous nature of everything she is stating.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/MFB/profilepicjpg.jpg MFB

Yeah, that part I understand. But like A-Mart, I have a problem with the whole mentioning her eating a burgeoisie food stuff that I ordered and made a glowing recommendation of. It'd be like opening child porn on your laptop while interviewing someone and writing, "I hate people that sell child porn," said some dude, as he looked at child porn on a laptop.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/thestorfer/1202393jpeg.jpeg andross

i didn't think the article was a diss--though the reporter did seem to have some beef, it read more as jealousy than anything, and the photo spread was really pretty slick. MIA did come off as a bit hypocritical when she was talking about where she lives in LA and all that, though, and diplo definitely dissed her. what he said should have been left in the studio.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/longjohn/wing-of-a-roller-smalljpg.jpg longjohn

Yeah, definitely more of a clarification than a correction. Also agree that she could have easily used an ellipses or made it clear when MIA said certain statements. I think the latter would have happened in the first place considering how detailed the article is.

I also agree that MIA acted like a complete child about this, but I maintain some slight frustration with how certain elements were presented.

And, sh*t, I said I was done with this but I clearly am not. Goddamnit.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/Andrew_Martin/me.jpg Andrew_Martin

It's an interesting issue. I can see where people are coming from with the truffle fries, but to me the point of that as it appeared in the article wasn't "OMG M.I.A. totally digs truffle fries but pretends that she's all political" it was the broader context it gave to a lot of other points in the article - Namely that M.I.A. capitalizes on being an "outsider" but she is perfectly comfortable being married to an heir, owning a Brentwood mansion, snacking on truffle fries while being profiled by the New York Times, and being signed to a major record label. The main "point" of the article is a pretty simple and self-evident one: M.I.A. is as far from a rebel and an outsider as you can get, and yet she continues to portray herself as such.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/MFB/profilepicjpg.jpg MFB

Yeah, that's the point of the article, but the truffle fries thing was specifically constructed to prove that hypothesis.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/thestorfer/1202393jpeg.jpeg andross

And I agree with the general point, I should say. Just hated the fries thing. But I'm also not sure who actually believes M.I.A. is a real revolutionary aside from M.I.A.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/thestorfer/1202393jpeg.jpeg andross

MIA cut through the red tape and showed that even the NY Times, a reputable paper, can do sneaky bs. good for her, gr8 sting ! the truffles are fungus in the world of elite journalism, after all...

the way MIA did it might be perhaps 'too strong' or 'too immature', but cutting through red tape requires that. journalism is evolving to blogdom, and ppl (even stars) can have a final say against the media giants, if they feel wronged. too bad for MIA's 'rapper image', she is getting little credit for going against the status quo and doing something gutsy.

As for MIA herself, this is not to say MIA is sincere or insincere in her political views, or whether affording truffle fries (even if it's on the Times tab) means you're an insider or outsider.. She is a celeb, after all.

simply this: MIA got em!!


I'm not surprised that someone who doesn't understand the meaning of the phrase "red tape" would be on MIA's side.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/MFB/profilepicjpg.jpg MFB

I had truffle fries once. Thought they were kinda gross. Also, unrelated, I have not heard an M.I.A. track yet that suggests she's a particularly good rapper. Just sayin'.

Greg Ingber

What about a correction from MIA?

"Sri Lanka is not part of Africa . . . and I am NOT from Africa, as I suggested when I told the NYT: '[Bono]'s not from Africa -- I'm from there.'

"And I am not self-important, UNauthentic or in need of reality as the NYT piece makes me out to be -- which is why I Tweeted the NYT writer's cell phone #."

MIA = Reality Escapes Me?

Find us on Facebook

Latest Comments