John Oliver Takes on the Error-Plagued World of Credit Reporting


John Oliver took on the dicey world of credit reporting, or as the Last Week Tonight host described it on Sunday, the “basis for the single most important three-digit number in your whole life other than 311—the Beatles of rap rock.”

Businesses use credit reports to determine whether to lend credit to someone. But as Oliver explained, nearly a quarter of every credit report contains inaccurate information, including critical errors that can block a person from getting hired at a job and even renting an apartment.

It’s an error-ridden process by which many important life events are effectively destroyed. Watch above to see how Oliver tries to get credit reporting companies to understand the gravity of these routine mistakes.

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You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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