Best Of 2017

BEST FAKE NEWS: CL moving to St. Petersburg


Don’t get us wrong, we love the idea of having an office in St. Petersburg. (Some of us could even walk to work.) Thing is, the big headline on the Tampa Bay Times’s website last April, “Rum craft distillery, Creative Loafing to move into ‘town square’ planned for St. Pete Warehouse District,” was fake news. Flat wrong. Published without first going to an important source for the story — namely, Creative Loafing. Kinda lazy, considering all those Pulitzers they tout over there, but maybe reporter Charlie Frago was too busy digging up sewage stories to bother with accuracy. Granted, he did call CL publisher James Howard after the story ran — and when Howard told him that he’d signed a letter of interest in the distillery/town square project but any decision about moving anywhere was years away, Frago responded that he’d thought that the story and headline might need to be “tweaked.” And “tweak” the Times did, by inserting a lot of “maybe’s” — as in (we kid you not), “Craft rum distillery, maybe [italics ours] Creative Loafing, to move into town square...” etc etc. If it ever happens, Charlie Frago, we’ll give you a call. Rum’s on us. —David Warner