Request a Retraction or Correction from the Media • Letter Templates and Guides

How to write this letter:

1Inform the reader that he or she made an error in his or her report.
2State what was presented to the public and then give the correction.
3Request a retraction or correction.
4If appropriate, thank the reader for his or her cooperation.


Make sure that your reader knows which article, interview, or report you are referring to as you firmly make your request. Be sure to repeat the incorrect information and be specific about what the correct information is.

Example Letter #1


I have been a satisfied subscriber to your publication for the past eight years and have always considered your reporting to be reliable. I am sure you want that reputation to continue, so I bring to your attention several errors in your article regarding Doe's philanthropic contributions. I am enclosing the article with mistakes circled in red ink. Corrections are written in the margins. Please print a correction.

As you know, the Doe Foundation has supported community development and beautification efforts for years. In order to retain the confidence of cooperating agencies, it is imperative that published information is correct. Thank you for your cooperation.

Example Letter #2


I was horrified to read on the front page of the Springfield Star that I am planning to divorce my husband of 28 years. There is no truth whatever to this statement. Serious errors of this nature cause great distress to all those concerned. I hereby request that you print an immediate retraction and apology. I expect the retraction to receive the same prominence as the original article did.

Example Letter #3


An unfortunate error appeared in your article on the Springfield Middle School's Arts program. It is the lead character in the musical and not Mrs. Doe, our drama teacher, who spends most of her time flirting with the young men in the cast. This error, as you may imagine, has led to much embarrassment for Mrs. Doe. Please print an apology and retraction as soon as possible.

Example Letter #4


Your recent article on great cooks identified the British chef John Doe as the inventor of the croissant. As a matter of fact, the croissant was originally created by the cooks of Budapest, in celebration of their repelling a Turkish invasion.

Would you be so kind as to publish a correction? Thank you for your cooperation.