Fact Check

AP Releases Athletes' Home Phone Numbers

Did AP mistakenly send out hundreds of athletes' home phone numbers?

Published Jun 29, 2007

Claim:   An Associated Press dispatch mistakenly sent out to newspapers included home phone numbers for hundreds of well-known sports figures.

Status:   True.

Example:   [Collected on the Internet, 2004]

Some clown from AP Sports put his entire rolodex in a story and sent it out ... Someone is handing him a brightly colored pink slip as we speak. So many good names... can't wait to drunk dial Steinbrenner & Bush


Aaron Hank

ABC Radio

Abdul-Jabbar Kareem

Abraham Seth

AC Nielsen

Adams Alan

Adcock Joe

Albert Marv

Alderson Sandy

Alfano, Pete (ATP)

Allen Doug (NFLPA)

Allen Mel

Alliss Peter

Anderson Dick

Anderson Ottis

Anderson Sparky

Andretti Mario

Andros Dee

Angelos Peter

Antonucci John

AP Broadcast

AP Radio


Archibald Tiny

Argovitz Jerry

Argyros George

Armato Leonard (agent for Shaq, atty for Kareem)

Arnold Jennifer

Arum Bob

Atlanta Organizing Committee (Bob Brennan)

Auerbach Red

Autry Gene

Origins:   We've truncated the list to the 'A' entries and removed the phone numbers in the example reproduced above, but it is a real excerpt from an Associated Press dispatch inadvertently sent out to newspaper sports departments on 7 January 2004. The full list included home phone numbers for hundreds of current and former professional athletes, managers, and coaches from a wide variety of sports, as well as team owners, league officials, agents, lawyers, news outlets, and media rating companies. (Many of the entries on the list are obviously out-of-date; some of the people included, such as former Anaheim Angels owner Gene Autry, have passed away.)

The transmission of the list was soon followed by a second dispatch advising recipients to "Disregard" the previous dispatch.

According to the Los Angeles Times:

An AP spokesman called it an "inadvertent transmission."

Said Times Sports Editor Bill Dwyre: "Knowing [AP sports editor] Terry Taylor, there's going to be an opening in her department."

Last updated:   29 June 2007


  Sources Sources:

    Stewart, Larry.   "Morning Briefing."

    Los Angeles Times.   8 January 2004.

David Mikkelson founded the site now known as snopes.com back in 1994.

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