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A Kate Gosselin dating show: Believe it if you want

Let's end the year by listening to our better journalistic angels and knocking down what looks like an absolute garbage rumor about Kate Gosselin being considered for a reality TV dating show in 2010.

I can't remember seeing a more suspect looking report even in connection with the totally debased coverage that has surrounded the implosion of "Jon & Kate Plus 8" by members of the celebrity gossip pack. This is the bottom-feeding crew who are willing to print false items planted by publicists or just make stories up out of thin air for page views on slow days -- like today. They disguise their dishonesty by using anoymous and unnamed sources as if this was Watergate.

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Let me just quickly deconstruct this rumor.

(AP Photo/Richard Drew)

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It appears today on the Web site of the "New York Daily News," which certainly lends it some credibility. The "Daily News," after all, is a mainstream publication that generally offers reliable TV coverage.

Except the "Daily News" totally lays the "report" of Kate being considered for a show off on an item published at the Web site Popeater.com. No liability here, is the message from the "Daily News" story; the New York tabloid is just reporting what Popeater.com is reporting.

But what is Popeater.com's "report" based on? First of all, it is written by Rob Shuter. I know nothing about Shuter. But you can see how gawker.com characterizes him here.

But forget the author, the "report" itself is Swiss cheese when it comes to credibility. It is based on the alleged words of unnamed "sources."

"Sources tell me the newly-single Kate Gosselin is in discussions to star in a new reality show...," Popeater's report says.

And then, it quotes an unamed "TV Executive" who says, "Love her or hate her," people are "fascinated" by Kate Gosselin.

You be the judge of whether or not the quote has the ring of truth as to how people actually speak.

But then, just in case anyone might come back in a couple of months to check on this "report," readers are warned that the idea of Kate Gosselin getting a dating show is only in the "development" phase, which means there's an out if nothing concrete ever surfaces.

So unnamed sources are cited, and an unnamed TV executive is quoted as saying an idea is in the "development" stage for a show that sounds as unlikely as Jon Gosselin enrolling in Harvard Divinity School next month to earn a Ph.D. in Sacred Scripture.

Believe the Kate Gosselin "report" it if you want.

Me, I'm going to take the high road on this one -- and throughout the coming year when it comes to reporting on the increasingly sleazy and pathetic saga of Jon & Kate.

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