Justin Bieber and Hailey Baldwin are allegedly married, and more unbelievably still, it appears TMZ was misinformed about it for weeks. The gossip site reports today that Bieber and Baldwin officially tied the knot back on September 13, when TMZ itself published a photo of the couple heading into a New York City courthouse in casual wear.
This, by TMZ standards, is a big screw-up: In recent days, the outlet insisted on the accuracy of sources who reportedly said the Beiber-Baldwin marriage reports were premature, and that the couple had merely visited the courthouse to obtain a marriage license, not to actually use it. (Sample headline: “Justin and Hailey Not Married Yet … But Maybe Next Week.”) TMZ stuck by that story as Baldwin herself denied the marriage rumors in a tweet (since deleted), and even after Alec Baldwin, who is Hailey’s uncle, told the Emmys red carpet that the pair “just went off and got married.”
People magazine, however, reported the marriage back on September 14, the day after TMZ published the courthouse photo. Today’s new TMZ report includes a rare concession to a rival: “Fact is … People mag got it right.”
News reports are corrected all the time, certainly in the world of anonymously sourced celebrity gossip. Missing Justin Bieber’s marriage is still a surprising look for TMZ, as responsible as any other outlet for the Biebs’ longevity as tabloid fodder and hardly afraid of breaking secret celeb wedding news. This, after all, is the site that reportedly held onto a video of a teenage Bieber using racial slurs in exchange for years’ worth of exclusive access and appearances. Assuming they’ve got the correct intel now, congratulations to Justin and Hailey on the bamboozle.