The Rolling Stone rape story debacle keeps getting worse.
We now have a ton of information about how Sabrina Erdely and her team lashed together their potentially libelous tome about a victim named Jackie, and those who sought to silence her. We know that Phi Kappa Psi, the fraternity targeted by the story, is exploring its legal options, and we know that nobody involved on Rolling Stone’s end is going to suffer any real consequences.
What we’ve been missing—at least until now—are faces for the names of those who have been harmed by Rolling Stone’s negligent reporting.
Ryan Duffin, identified as “Randall” in the article, and Alex Stock, identified as “Andrew,” both played significant roles in the story Jackie spun for Erdely and that Erdely in turn published.
In her statements to Erdely, Jackie said that she made contact with three friends the night of the alleged rape. Jackie called Ryan late that night, and when he met up with her he says that he saw no physical evidence on Jackie’s person to suggest that she had been attacked. Jackie told Erdely a completely different story, and said that Ryan had indicated that he wouldn’t speak to Rolling Stone about what happened because he “didn’t want to be part of [Jackie’s] shitshow.”
Alex’s time in Erdely’s spotlight paints an equally callous picture that Alex flatly denies. Jackie claims that Alex hedged on reporting Jackie’s alleged assault because he was concerned that his social life, and the social lives of his friends, would take a hit if members of the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity found out.
Neither Ryan nor Alex were ever contacted by Erdely, and yet both somehow managed to play key roles in Erdely’s narrative. Both recently sat down with Megyn Kelly to sound off on how they were portrayed in the controversial article:
At this point, I’m not sure that it does anybody any good to ask those who unwittingly have been thrust into the spotlight whether or not they think there’s anything to Jackie’s as-of-now-debunked story; I do, however, see great value in putting names and faces up on the screen and running stories about how one sloppy journalist with an agenda can derail even temporarily the lives of people who never asked to be a part of the narrative.
The fact of the matter is that the internet is forever, and this story will never go away. Ryan, Alex, and the other members of the UVA community implicated in this story will never be able to scrub off the mud. The least we can do is pass them the megaphone and let them have a say about which direction the story heads next.DONATE
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