Onward State Founder Explains ‘What Happened Last Night’ with Paterno Death Mistake

In a post shared this morning, Onward State founder and general manager Davis Shaver candidly explains how the Penn State student news outlet mistakenly reported Joe Paterno’s death prior to its actual occurrence.  According to Shaver, the error seems to have been caused by a pair of deceitful happenings in rapid succession: a hoax email from a supposedly high-ranking PSU official and a dishonest Onward State reporter.

As he writes, “[A]t around 8:00 p.m., one of our writers posted that he had received word from a source that Joe Paterno had died. The source had been forwarded an email ostensibly sent from a high-ranking athletics official (later found to be a hoax) to Penn State athletes with information of Paterno’s passing. A second writer– whom we later found out had not been honest in his information– confirmed to us that the email had been sent to football players. With two independent confirmations of an email announcing his death, managing editor Devon Edwards was confident in the story and hit send on the tweet we had written, informing the world that Joe Paterno had died.”

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  1. […] State’s recent handling of the Joe Paterno death faux pas is a perfect example of this two-step (including a full letter breaking things down by the editor […]