As a newspaper journalist, I can say: You're simply wrong. That isn't standard practice, isn't taught in J-school, and will most likely get you fired on the spot from even a marginally reputable publication.
Did he explicitly make you say the direct opposite of what you actually said? Because that's really weird and unusual even when somebody is explicitly lying (as opposed to just mischaracterizing something, which is something people do in conversation all the time).
And is this one guy somehow the "standard"? Because it sounds like you had one or two bad experiences and decided to generalize your feelings to an entire profession. We've all run into a bad ______ who we can't understand how he still has a job, but that doesn't mean ______ as a whole are bad. (Fill in "journalists," "programmers," "waiters," "doctors" or pretty much anything else.)
I'm not familiar with that guy or with Wired's editorial standards in general, but I do think you're being unreasonably broad in a way that you wouldn't be if, say, you'd met a bumbling computer scientist.
I'm sorry, but I have to agree with Eliezer; I've known the details behind a half dozen stories or so personally, and in almost every case in the MSM there have been factual errors reported as truth.
One time is an anecdote; two times starts to be compelling. 6/6 times has a reasonable level of statistical significance.
FWIW, I'm somewhat convinced that a majority of computer programmers would fall under the general umbrella of "bumbling," though I don't think I'd use that term. "Marginally competent" might fit the bill better.
The fact that a newspaper doesn't habitually discuss its HR matters in print is not relevant to whether blatant falsehood is "standard practice" in journalism.
The fact that you saw the retraction should tell you that kind of writing does not meet the paper's standard. Editors don't enjoy writing notices to the effect of "Oops, I totally failed at my job there." They do it because the alternative is an even worse blow to the paper's integrity.