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Cowboy BeBop at His Computer

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"Cowboy" means Bounty Hunter, "Bebop" is the name of the Cool Starship, that girl's name is Ed, and no, that's not her computer.
"Everything you read in the newspapers is absolutely true except for that rare story of which you happen to have firsthand knowledge."
Erwin Knoll

This is when the media reports blatantly incorrect facts about a creative work that any fan or — in the most egregious cases — even just someone with any kind of passing knowledge of said work would know to be wrong. It seems like some people just can't be bothered to do any fact-checking. Let's face it — sometimes, it's easy to do. But what about the news? Newspapers, a News Broadcast, national news, etc.? It is in their job description to do at least some research, to make sure they aren't stating factual untruths.

This rule apparently doesn't apply much to works of fiction. Maybe the news media doesn't seem to care as much about it in question as about whatever effect it had. But that's no reason to make an error that could have been avoided by looking into the material a bit, especially if said error involves serious accusations like blaming a child's death on imitating something they saw on TV. This often results in examples either factually incorrect, from minor to grossly wrong like the Trope Namer itself, or taking some "facts" from The Theme Park Version of a larger entity, which to some is much worse than just not doing the research.


Subtrope of "Common Knowledge". Compare Complaining About Shows You Don't Watch. See also Fandom-Enraging Misconception (when it's the fans who get the names wrong), Animation Age Ghetto (when people dismiss various kinds of cartoons as family-friendly when they, in fact, are anything but) and All Anime Is Naughty Tentacles (a problem endemic to Anime and Manga). I Am Not Shazam is a key trope involved. Also compare Dan Browned, the version for fictional works. Also see New Media Are Evil, though if you find yourself constantly annoyed by this kind of thing then you probably believe Old Media Are Evil. May also overlap with a Shallow Parody if the parodists in question are really careless with their research. This is basically the Real Life version of Critical Research Failure.


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Alternative Title(s): Fact Check Failure


"Bonus Bob!"

Caddicarus spends a portion of his Playstation Magazine retrospective poking fun at some of the inaccurate information and errors.

How well does it match the trope?

4.77 (26 votes)

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Main / CowboyBebopAtHisComputer

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Main / CowboyBebopAtHisComputer