Donald Trump’s White House released a “transcript” of the president’s call with the Ukrainian president on Wednesday. But can we really call it a “transcript?”
According to NPR, we shouldn’t. In a note to reporters, NPR Standards and Practices Editor Mark Memmott warned its reporters to call the “transcript” for what it really is, a memo.
“Because the document released by the White House is not a word-for-word record of the conversation President Trump had with the president of Ukraine, please do not simply refer to it as a ‘transcript,’” Memmott wrote. “If you use that word, it must be followed by a phrase such as ‘based on notes taken by staff assigned to listen.’”
According to Memmott, calling the document “an account of the call” or a “memorandum” is preferable.
“It is also important to note that it was released by the White House. And we should, when we can, point out that the document itself notes that it is not a ‘verbatim transcript,’” he added.