This morning's Philadelphia Inquirer ran a piece by Gail Shister positing that Katie Couric would leave the CBS Evening News anchor chair after the 2008 election. It's a story full of hedges (the first two paragraphs contain a "may," a "possibly," and a "there's a growing feeling") and CBS News was quick to refute it.

This piece is beyond ridiculous — unfounded, gratuitous, utterly malicious and, most importantly, untrue, as stated unequivocally by CBS News President Sean McManus. It is incomprehensible how a major daily newspaper can base an entire article on unsourced rumor — including from a direct competitor — about what CBS News management is thinking, when those rumors were directly knocked down on the record at the highest levels. Is this where journalism has gone at the Inquirer?

Uh, Sean? Yes. Guess we'll find out when Katie Couric's spare-changing on Broadway in 2008, eh?

CBS evening blues [Philadelphia Inquirer]
CBS Criticizes Column: "Is This Where Journalism Has Gone At The Inquirer?" [TVNewser]
Philadelphia Journalism's New Order [NYT]