In July of 2018, Attkisson published a listicle, titled "60 Media Mistakes in the Trump Era: The Definitive List." In it, the former CBS investigative reporter referenced journalistic missteps made by numerous outlets, including the New York Post, USA Today, Detroit Free Press, CNN, CNBC, and AP, among others.
Attkisson told Radio Sputnik's Fault Lines that the repeated incidences were a puzzling matter.
"There's so many [mistakes] made by formerly top well-respected media organizations — the New York Times, the Washington Post, all the networks — and for us to then act like we don't understand why we're not always taken seriously at first blush with facts that we report is mystifying to me," she told hosts Garland Nixon and Eric Ladny.
One incident that immediately came to mind for Attkisson took place in January 2017, when reporter Zeke Miller of Time Magazine reported that Trump had ordered the bust of Martin Luther King Jr. removed from the Oval Office. After the story went viral, Miller issued a correction, stating that the bust had been "obscured by an agent and door" when he made the conclusion.
Trump later used the failed reporting to highlight "how dishonest the media is," a frequent notion riffed on by 45 while on the campaign trail, in addition to calling out organizations he dubbed "fake news."
"It set a new tone because the reporter didn't even check his facts," Attkisson said. "The basic checking standards we used to follow have been kind of tossed aside, and explain some of the reasons we're making some basic mistakes and fact errors that wouldn't be accepted in journalism school."
When asked to reflect on the current state of journalism, especially in the age of Trump, Attkisson said that it's simply problematic.
"We should report fairly and accurately on people whether we like them or not, especially on people we don't like. We should still follow our journalistic standards," she stressed.