CBS brass got an unpleasant surprise on Sunday when Google News led its entertainment section with a story titled Quartet of ‘NCIS’ Co-Stars In CBS Limbo. It was dated July 17, labeled exclusive and carried a byline, Elizar Caraelce. In addition to being a carbon copy of the story I did on April 28, down to the exclusive tag and the style of capitalizing the words in the headline, the “new” story had one major problem – it was severely outdated. In the 3 months since I broke that news, the four NCIS actors in question have re-upped with the show. It is pretty puzzling that a Google algorithm would pick up a 3-month-old story and beam it out as top fresh news. But the story took an even more bizarre turn when a CBS publicist assigned with getting the information corrected traced the story to an India-based news Website, Capital Talk, whose contact information wasn’t working. However, the About Us page is working, and that’s where the following bio for the site’s senior editor, Sayyam Mughal, is posted (grammar is authentic): “A registered nurse turned graphics designer and blogger. She topped the Nursing Licensure Examination in the Pakistan during her time. Now, she blogs and covers press releases and do some photo shoots with well known celebrities in the country.”
OK, I admit that entertainment journalism and blogging in general is not exactly rocket science (though I do have that background), but still, a registered nurse running a news web site is pretty hilarious. However, the way things are going with outsourcing taking over more and more aspects of our lives, that could be the future. Blogging is in a way customer service.