Someone is sending an anonymous letter to Charlotte newsrooms including NewsChannel 36 and our news partners at the Charlotte Observer saying a local politician was photographed at a strip club while out of state on official business.
No photo included, sorry.
It turns out the information is apparently wrong.
I called the politician. He said the anonymous writer had him confused with someone else and no way was he in the strip club.
The letter-writer makes mention that he or she thinks reporters are squelching the story. So if you don't report it, you're part of the cover-up conspiracy.
You can't respond directly to the letter writer. There's no direct return address.
And if you name names, you're spreading rumors just to quash them.
So you be the reporter. What would you do?
A) Trash the letter. Who cares if a politician went to a strip club anyway?
B) Ignore the letter. You'd just be spreading rumors.
C) Report the letter and the denial. That way the public can see what the politician is up against.
D) Ask the boss for an expense allowance and three weeks to check out strip clubs. (Not happening. My bosses Mary and Allison take a dim view of such exploits.)
E) Cop out. Write a blog entry like this one and ask others what they would do.
F) None of the above, dummy. Instead I would... (fill in the blank.)
I await your response.
If you want to mail or e-mail me privately, to give advice or tips that are preferably both newsworthy and demonstrably true, my address is below.
1001 Wood Ridge Center Drive
Charlotte, NC 28217-1901