[Washington] Post readers constantly complain about the excessive use of anonymous sources in the newspaper. But the problem is even worse online.

Staff-written news blogs are replete with violations of The Post’s long-established and laudable standards governing confidential sources. These unnamed sources often are cited without providing readers with even a hint of their reliability or why they were granted anonymity.

In the first two weeks of December alone, Post news blogs included more than 20 unnamed sources without any explanation of their quality or why they warranted confidentiality. Many blogs referred only to “sources” or “those close to” a subject or situation.

— Andrew Alexander, Ombudsman, Washington Post on the paper’s use of anonymous sources.

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