It was big news when court documents were unsealed revealing a whistleblower lawsuit accusing drug giant Merck of fraud and lying about the true efficacy of its mumps vaccine. Just about every media, large and small, picked it up and the world was abuzz about the hundreds of millions of dollars the lawsuit claimed Merck had defrauded from the U.S. government.
The Wall Street Journal published the story in the form of a Dow Jones news release written by Jon Kamp on June 22, 2012, and links to the story began popping up on social media like Facebook.
Then, suddenly, the link to the story no longer worked, and if anyone clicked on the link in social media, it would show up “page not found.” Apparently the story had been pulled, and when search engines and Internet archives wouldn’t even show it, it looked as if it had never been published on the Journal’s site at all. It was erased nearly clean–except for a small stock-watcher’s website, Traders.com, which did a good job of erasing it from its main site but didn’t catch it in the cache.
The question is, why did the WSJ pull the story and try to erase as if it never existed when there were actual court documents for evidence?
Is it possible that an event that occurred on June 251-three days after the story broke-could have influenced the story being pulled? On that day, the Wall Street Journal’s “elite” network of CFOs from the world’s top corporations met at the WSJ2. Merck is on that executive council3.
My team attempted to connect with the WSJ on this issue, but as of this time, we have not yet received an answer as to why this article was pulled.