Tuesday, August 7, 2018

AP dispatches disappearing from the Washington Post website?

Has anyone else noticed that AP stories are disappearing from the Washington Post's website?

Between June 7, 2018, and July 3, 2018, the Washington Post published five AP stories about an Iraqi refugee in Germany who was accused of killing a 14-year-old girl.  Below are the URLs of those five stories.  Each story now displays the error message: "Sorry, we can’t seem to find the page you’re looking for."

https://www.washingtonpost.com/pb/world/europe/germany-girl-14-killed-fugitive-iraqi-suspect-sought/2018/06/07/7fc8a73e-6a3c-11e8-a335-c4503d041eaf_story.html

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/suspect-in-girls-murder-in-germany-arrested-in-iraq/2018/06/08/33d96fa2-6b0e-11e8-a335-c4503d041eaf_story.html

https://www.washingtonpost.com/pb/world/europe/suspect-in-girls-killing-returned-to-germany-from-iraq/2018/06/09/1ef5698e-6c2f-11e8-a335-c4503d041eaf_story.html

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/suspect-said-to-have-confessed-to-killing-girl-in-germany/2018/06/09/6a9af2a2-6c28-11e8-a335-c4503d041eaf_story.html

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/iraqi-accused-of-killing-german-girl-also-rape-suspect/2018/07/03/8bb1d254-7ec9-11e8-a63f-7b5d2aba7ac5_story.html

I'm not gonna go all "conspiracy theorist" and say they were removed on purpose.  It just seems weird that they would disappear in the first place.  I can still see links for some of these stories on Google, but even when I click the Google links, the Washington Post's website gives me an error message:


???
I made archives for two of the Iraqi refugee stories (here and here).  However, I wasn't able to get archives for the other three stories.

It crossed my mind that maybe the Washington Post's website doesn't preserve all of the AP's dispatches.  I tested that theory out, and was able to get error messages for some other AP stories that were originally posted in June.  For example, these two URLs now give an error message:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/pb/politics/whitehouse/things-to-know-8-states-cast-midterm-primary-votes-tuesday/2018/06/05/88f814d8-687b-11e8-a335-c4503d041eaf_story.html

https://www.washingtonpost.com/pb/national/remains-of-civil-war-soldiers-found-in-pit-of-severed-limbs/2018/06/20/58471456-74ba-11e8-bda1-18e53a448a14_story.html

Right now, I'm leaning towards "weird database glitch" as far as an explanation.

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