The FCC’s redactions led the media to focus on far less important issues, such as the number of seconds that it would take Google to pay off the pathetic $25,000 fine the FCC levied for Google’s reluctance to cooperate in the investigation, and the fact that the still-unnamed engineer invoked his 5th Amendment rights.
The FCC redacted the most incriminating portions of its report on Google’s Wi-Fi sniffing (top). Google wound up releasing the redacted text itself (bottom). Click for full size.
The media didn’t screw up. It was essentially misled by a federal agency, which for some reason found it necessary to shield Google’s reputation.