*Update: Dana Milbank writes that the Yes Men perpetrated the memo hoax and even held a mock press conference yesterday that, to the surprise of the journalists sitting among the actors pretending to be journalists in the audience, was rudely interrupted by a member of the real U.S. Chamber of Commerce and then broke down into a bizarre argument about legitimacy.
So how can a reporter separate truth from fiction? From Milbank:
There were clues, of course, such as the name of the Chamber "spokeswoman" listed in the original news release: Erica Avidus. Reporters and bloggers later figured out that "avidus" comes from a Latin word meaning greedy.
But in an instant news culture, who has time to check out such things?