Many years ago I was a minor affiliate - not really a part of, just in the orbit - to a news story that ran that I knew, with as much certainty as one can know of these things, to be false. To be honest, I can't even remember what the story was. Brain is swiss cheese at this point. But I do remember the reaction of the journalist - and I also don't remember who that journalist was! - which was, essentially, sources don't lie to us because if they do we will burn them. In all of my years of media watching, I have seen precisely one source be burned. Oddly, that was Howard Kurtz burning Ann Coulter. Journalists never burn their sources, and so their sources are free to lie.
And that lying is quite often the bigger story. It never gets reported.