Benoit Denizet-Lewis appears to be a bit naive about what being on the New York Times Magazine masthead means, and about proper online formatting (who centers text!?). Anyway, he's really sorry for possibly having compromised Tiger's rehab by confirming the sketchier reports on Tiger's whereabouts.
A different source also later confirmed this to me. I put that confirmation on my blog. I did not “break” this story, nor would I have.
With that said, I do regret reporting further confirmation of the name of the treatment center. As a person in recovery, I am in awe of anyone with the courage to confront and recover from their addiction. If my posting and the subsequent media coverage of it affected anyone’s ability at this facility (or at any other) to recover anonymously, I am deeply sorry.
It doesn't really matter since a photographer caught Tiger at the clinic.
An unbylined Daily Mail reports features a photo of his, uh, chalet and says that Tiger's been extended special privileges at the clinic.
Whereas patients would normally share rooms and carry out domestic chores, the golfer has his own chalet, and has been excused from housework.
He is also receiving one-on-one treatment rather than the usual group therapy, it has been claimed.
Disgruntled fellow patients say that before he checked in he was allowed to renovate the chalet where he will spend the next month and he has a maid to clean it and do his chores.
As for the photos, Steve Elling had this reaction:
In keeping with the mystery surrounding the entire Woods scenario, the photos have a certain Yeti quality, as the shrouded subject in question looks in the general direction of the photographer and keeps on moving. The photos have slightly better resolution that the Loch Ness Monster shots from Scotland.
Woods, if it’s indeed him, has a hooded sweatshirt pulled over his head, is wearing a ballcap and shorts, and appears to have a cup of coffee in hand. He was spotted outside one of the clinic’s private rooms, the report says.
Michael Bamberger sounds downright heartbroken by what he saw:
The poor bastard, the guy in those Enquirer snaps. He looks like a caged animal. It's hard not to feel sorry for him. Anyone who says Tiger brought his problems on himself is of course correct. You can imagine Elin's pain and embarrassment. But Tiger's whole life looks different since Thanksgiving, or it does to me.
I'd say that's a big yes.
And the Hattiesburg American says it is drawing the line by not covering Tiger's stay, unless of course Sherriff Buford T. Justice is called out to break up a paparazzi squabble.
Since Saturday, the American has not published any reports on Woods possibly being here.
And, unless there is some confirmation from the clinic or Woods himself, we don't intend to assign a reporter/photographer team to this story.
If something happens that warrants coverage, we'll have it.
There is a fine line between covering Woods when he wrecks his car and extending coverage when and if he gets treatment.
Where does news end and privacy begin, even if the person involved is one of the most recognizable faces in the world? That's a question that journalists debate constantly.
One of the tenets of the Society of Professional Journalists' Code of Ethics states: "Show good taste. Avoid pandering to lurid curiosity."