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Media Analyses





AP Corrects on Gaza's 'First' Mall


CAMERA's Israel office today prompted corrections of an Associated Press headline, article and photo captions which incorrectly referred to Gaza's "first" mall. Originally entitled "Gazans excited over territory's first indoor mall," today's article by Fares Akram began:
In a welcome sign of normalcy, the first indoor shopping mall -- complete with an international retail chain, three-story bookstore and bustling food court -- has opened in the Gaza Strip.
In addition, a series of AP photo captions in recent days, like the one below, referred to the newly opened facility as the "first indoor shopping mall in the Gaza Strip."
 
 
In this Saturday Feb. 18, 2017 photo, Palestinians buy fast food from the food court in the first indoor shopping mall in the Gaza Strip, in Gaza City. In a welcome sign of normalcy, the first indoor shopping mall -- complete with an international retail chain, three story bookstore and food court -- has opened in the Gaza Strip. The owners have overcome conflict and an Israeli-Egyptian blockade to build the gleaming 1,800 sq. meter (10,000 sq. feet) shopping center. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
 
The newly opened Capital Mall is the largest mall in the Gaza Strip, but it is not the first. The first two smaller facilities were opened in 2010 and 2011, and AP reported on and photographed them at the time.
 

In this picture taken Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2011 Palestinians shop at the new al-Andulusia mall in Gaza City. An abrupt flurry of construction is suddenly allowing a tiny middle class to flaunt its wealth in the impoverished Gaza Strip, fueling perhaps the most acrimonious grassroots resentment yet toward the ruling Hamas movement. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
 
 
FILE -- In this July 17, 2010 file photo, a light display is reflected on the head scarves of Palestinian women as they walk inside the newly opened Gaza Mall, in Gaza City. (AP Photo/Tara Todras-Whitehill)
 
In response to correspondence from CAMERA, AP editors commendably amended both the article and the photo captions. The headline, which originally referred to the "territory's first indoor mall," now states: "Gazans excited over new indoor mall." Likewise, editors replaced the reference in the first sentence to "the first indoor shopping mall" with accurate wording about "a new Western-style indoor shopping mall." 
 
Finally, editors revised all of the recent photo captions which had referred to the new facility as Gaza's "first indoor shopping mall" to more accurately refer to Gaza's "first-of-its kind shopping mall."
 
 
In this Saturday Feb. 18, 2017 photo, Palestinians buy fast food from the food court in a new indoor shopping mall in the Gaza Strip, in Gaza City. In a welcome sign of normalcy, the first-of-its-kind shopping mall -- complete with an international retail chain, three-story bookstore and food court -- has opened in the Gaza Strip. The owners have overcome conflict and an Israeli-Egyptian blockade to build the gleaming 1,800 sq. meter (19,000 sq. feet) shopping center (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
 
CAMERA's timely action and AP's quick correction of today's wire story underscores the value of the organization's work monitoring and responding to wire stories in the same news cycle as they appear. With this preemptive work, CAMERA's Israel office helps prevent misinformation from appearing in media outlets around the world.
 
Meanwhile, CAMERA is in communication with The New York Times about its recent reference to the Capital Mall as the Gaza Strip's "first real mall." (The Times' Ethan Bronner, back in 2010 and 2011, covered the opening of the earlier malls.)
 
For additional AP corrections prompted by CAMERA, please see here.
 
Feb. 23 Update: Ynet and The Daily Star (Lebanon) Correct
 
Today we noticed that Ynetnews, an Israeli English-language news site, and The Daily Star (Lebanon) both ran the original AP story with the "first indoor mall error." Following communication from CAMERA's Israel office, the Israeli and Lebanese news sites both corrected. Before and after screen shots follow. In addition, Voice of America also published the error, and we were told that it will be corrected.
 
 
 
 
 
Feb. 26 Update: VOA Corrects
 
VOA has corrected its headline, article and photo captions.

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