A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from January 25, 2011
“Check a story, lose a story”

"Check a story, lose a story” is an old saying in the gossip column business. The saying has been credit to Hollywood gossip columnists Hedda Hopper (1885-1966) and Louella Parsons (1881-1972) and has been cited in print since at least 1961.

New York City-based gossip columnist Liz Smith credited Louella Parsons for the saying, but Smith cautioned that gossip should be accurate.


Google Books
The fifty-year decline and fall of Hollywood
By Ezra Goodman
New York, NY: Simon & Schuster
1961
Pg. 18:
The Hollywood press is little more than a convenient transmission belt for Hollywood press agents. it is shaky on grammar and shakier on facts. Some of the Hollywood press have been known to complain that every time they check a story, they lose it.

12 April 1984, Baltimore (MD) Sun, “To Liz Smith, gossip should be accurate” by Varlie Shorr, pg. E1:
“You check a story, you lose it,” Louella Parsons said.

Google News Archive
9 June 1984, Montreal (Quebec) Gazette. Thomas Schnurmacher column, pg. F6, col. 3:
About 50 years ago, a Hollywood actress gave up acting to become an agent. As a sideline, she also wrote a column for Motion Picture magazine. Her name was Hedda Hopper. She went on to become Hollywood’s most celebrated gossip columnists—her only rival was Louella Parsons. Hedda was the one who coined the expression: “Check a story, lose a story.”

Google Books
Mike Connolly and the manly art of Hollywood gossip
By Val Holley
Jefferson, NC: McFarland
2003
Pg. 118:
After Connolly mollified Wald with a rare correction, he quoted to Wald the classic line of a female columnist, “Goddammit, every time I check a story I lose it!”

iPhone World
iPhone confirmed for Rogers Wireless in Canada. Again.
April 6, 2007 by dennis
(...)
COMMENTS
dennis 3 years ago
(...)
P.S. I do NOT believe in the “Check a story, lose a story” concept. I believe it’s a stupid idea invented by tabloids. What I actually believe in is “no news, is good news”, which couldn’t be further from the idea you’ve stated. If I believed in “Check a story, lose a story”, I certainly wouldn’t have placed that call to Rogers or published this story (http://www.iphoneworld.ca/news.../), don’t you think?

Deep Climate
National Post’s Lawrence Solomon claims Google censors search results
Posted on January 19, 2010
by Deep Climate
Just when you thought commentary on the CRU hacked emails could not get any more absurd, along comes National Post columnist and “environmentalist” Lawrence Solomon to up the ante. Believe it or not, Solomon’s latest over-the-top screed accuses Google of censoring search results to downplay the so-called Climategate scandal. But, as they say in the newspaper biz: “Check a story, lose a story”.

SFGate
Airplane hero
August 13, 2010|By Jon Carroll
“Check a fact, lose a story” is the old newspaper adage, and that seems to be true in the case of flight attendant Steven Slater, who supposedly got so fed up with a passenger’s refusal to follow his request to sit down until the plane had gotten to the gate that he issued a few choice words over the intercom, popped the emergency chute, grabbed a beer, slid out of the plane, sprinted across the tarmac and drove home.

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityMedia/Newspapers/Magazines/Internet • (0) Comments • Tuesday, January 25, 2011 • Permalink