TechCrunch apologized to its readers, both owning up to the error and appearing to take a shot at PR Web in the process.
"We were wrong on this post, for not following up with Google and the other company involved but posting rather than ... waiting on a solid confirmation beforehand from either source," read an editor's note atop the original post. "We apologize to our readers, to the companies involved, and we'll be sure to act in a more responsible manner for future stories, rather than trusting the word of a website that doesn't necessarily hold itself up to any journalistic standards."
Forbes and Reuters were among the other news outlets that reported the fake purchase, as were popular tech sites PC Magazine, The Next Web, Business Insider, Engadget, VentureBeat, The Verge and GigaOM. Other outlets, like MSNBC and USA Today, ran the Associated Press account.