Rumors that Wal-Mart would offer an iPhone for $99 after Christmas proved unfounded, but the genesis of a misunderstanding that swept through business news outlets is intriguing, Fortune reports. Wal-Mart will indeed sell iPhones, and at a discount—a whopping $2 off list price. But a blogger’s report of that news, tied to conjecture about a discount model, sped the spread of the erroneous rumor.
The Boy Genius Report blog, which has ties with iPhone carrier AT&T, broke both the true and the false stories. But the likelier news got tied up with the rumor, which figured in an analyst’s recommendation to clients. Bloomberg then picked up the "news." The blogger has not retracted his original story but does say, “At this point I just don’t know.”