The site that knows it all screws up sometimes. Big-time

CRIKEY is a digital publication from Melbourne in Australia which has pretensions aplenty. It often claims to be the last – and correct – word on things. But oft times, it shows its ignorance. It shows its insularity.

Crikey sends a daily email to its subscribers five days a week. Its content also goes on its website, though only subscribers can access it. And this is a site which preaches a lot about things like freedom.

When Nelson Mandela died, Crikey ran an article by Guy Rundle, a writer who has a tendency to be unduly verbose. He revels in literary masturbation, using multi-syllable words here and there. He can never say anything in 600 words, hence most of his essays are continued off the daily newsletter. But Rundle, who delights in correcting other people, can screw up himself. And when he does it, he goes big.


While the rest of the world was correctly referring to Mandela by his tribal name, Madiba, Crikey called him Mandiba in an article right on top of its website. The mistake – and that’s an understatement – was there in the daily newsletter on December 6. The website was corrected shortly thereafter.

But it took quite a while before this paragon of virtue decided to come clean.

On December 10, a full 96 hours after the screw-up, the staff at Crikey realised that someone may have seen this glorious screw-up before it was changed. And so, a small apology was added in the newsletter on December 10.