The Washington Post, June 1972: Two dogged reporters patiently delve into the details of a bizarre burglary at Democratic Party headquarters, diligently piece together the facts, cultivate the sources, and piece together a set of revelations that will lead to the first presidential resignation of the ‘story.
The Washington Post, Exactly Half a Century Later: Two Mean Girl cart cases spend an entire weekend teetering wildly and spewing inane accusations at their co-workers for micro-assaulting them. The more people laugh, the more they shout: “I am in danger!
How institutions change. The 145-year-old diary has already been personified by Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein: “Woodstein”. This weekend, the reputation of the WaPo was effectively redefined by MezRenz: Felicia Sonmez and Taylor Lorenz, who each shamed on paper for nothing.
The immediate cause of this spastic overreaction was a joke, retweeted by WaPo reporter Dave Weigel, which suggested that all women were bisexual or bipolar. This kind of “Bitches be craaaaazy!” The joke died down in the 80s, and Weigel shouldn’t have retweeted it, but Sonmez was clearly trying to get Weigel fired or punish her harshly when she retweeted Weigel’s retweet with a sarcastic note saying that it was “Fantastic to work in a medium where retweets like this are allowed! Weigel was already being corrected internally, so there was no need to go public on Twitter, and he quickly deleted and apologized. That should have been the end of it.
Meanwhile, many observers noted that it was a bit silly for Weigel to be forced to grovel for a dumb joke when another colleague, middle-aged TikTok reporter Taylor Lorenz, so colossally spoiled one. from his dumb attack plays on social media that the WaPo ended up attaching a series of (so far) three increasingly lengthy fixes to try and clean up the mess. The story as originally published falsely reported that Lorenz solicited comments from two of the people she trashed.
When even far-left CNN journalist Oliver Darcy kindly pointed out that the standard of journalism practiced here wasn’t great, Lorenz went crazy on Twitter and accused him of running a “vicious campaign of harassment/vilification”. against her.
Meanwhile, a fourth WaPo reporter, Jose Del Real, gently chided Sonmez for chasing Weigel on Twitter. “Felicia,” he says, “we all get it wrong from time to time. Engaging in repeated and targeted public harassment of a colleague is neither pretty nor particularly effective. It turns the language of inclusiveness into influence hunting and intimidation I don’t think that’s appropriate.
Sonmez went to Chernobyl in response, concluding a long series of hysterical tweets unloaded on Del Real and weeping about misogyny tagging his bosses, as if what they really wanted to do on a Sunday night was to intervene in a Twitter spat. in kindergarden. Del Real amusingly attempted to top it, noting, “As the only Mexican American journalist on the national desk, I know firsthand the sting of discriminatory systems.” He later clarified, “And for what it’s worth, I’m a gay Mexican American. You don’t need to educate me about being part of a marginalized group.
But who cares about the backgrounds of journalists? It is the reports of journalists that are supposed to count. Further, as leftist scholar Glenn Greenwald dryly noted, “For those who mark the various points of victimization at home, of the marginalized actors starring in the WPost oppression drama, 2 are graduates of the University of Harvard (Sonmez and Del Real) while the other was raised in Greenwich, CT, and educated at Swiss boarding schools (Lorenz).
The Watergate anniversary is an awkward reminder of what the newspaper used to be. For the past two weeks, the newspaper’s Twitter account has falsely claimed that George Floyd was “shot and killed in police custody”, indicating that his social media is in the hands of morons who don’t know the basic details of one of the biggest stories of the decade, and the newspaper was forced to add an editor’s note to its infamous Amber Heard op-ed from four years ago, which resulted in what must to be the most famous successful libel suit in American history.
Reach out to the other party, because the party you’re talking to might be wrong. If your mom says she loves you, check it out. you are not the story.
Those were the basic rules of journalism, back when people like Ben Bradlee ran outfits like the Washington Post. If Bradlee walked into WaPo’s newsroom today, he’d ask why it’s full of narcissists, neurotics and crybulia.
New York Post