Here’s a really interesting take on the Tiger Woods story. It’s by Eric Deggans from the National Sports Journalism Center. It questions whether the Tiger Woods coverage represents a turning point. In Deggans’ words: “the moment when we accept that today’s sped-up, always-on media environment virtually guarantees that controversial, confusing stories like Woods’ car accident will be misreported in the early hours and corrected as time goes on.” The initial reports were that Woods had sustained “serious injuries.” And that set off the flurry of reporting, much of it false. Apparently, according to the Florida Highway Patrol, injuries are always called “serious” when someone is taken to the hospital. But in the rush to get the story out, all we heard was that Tiger had been “seriously injured.” Speed frequently overwhelms subtlety. One of Deggans’ most interesting points is this: “I’d say there’s another reason why traditional news outlets don’t cover these stories well; they don’t necessarily have the same freedom to grant anonymity to sources or reward them as the tabloid outlets. So its small wonder TMZ can get the kind of eyewitness account the local newspaper cannot.” So what’s the future? Will news consumers accept the notion that instant access requires that accuracy be sacrificed? Or will consumers ultimately revert to more mainstream outlets? And what are the legal consequences if “less accuracy” becomes the standard?