St. Louis Post-Dispatch Purges Reporter Who Spoke to Witnesses Corroborating Ferguson Police Story
Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.
The news has already been written. Any deviations from it will be punished.
A pretty big buzz started last night when St. Louis Post-Dispatch reporter Christine Byers tweeted that there is plenty of support for Officer Darren Wilson’s account of the Michael Brown shooting:
“Police sources tell me more than a dozen witnesses have corroborated cop’s version of events in shooting.”
Now came this…
“On FMLA from paper. Earlier tweets did not meet standards for publication.”
Byers references sources who back up Wilson’s account, only to be told her tweet didn’t meet the standards of the newspaper she works for, and as a result, she is off under the Family and Medical Leave Act? How does FMLA enter into this?
Since when does Twitter count as a newspaper’s standards for publication? Plenty of New York Times reporters tweet their views and opinions and parts of developing stories.
Plenty of reporters have been behaving in a wildly unprofessional manner over Ferguson, on and off Twitter. They’ve been acting like a lynch mob.
Byers was reporting conditions on the ground on Twitter in much more neutral and professional terms, but at the same time the conclusion could have been drawn that she was sympathetic to the law and order side of the angle, not the rioters and looters that her colleagues preferred.
Christine Byers was actually quoting what police told her about the violence. That may have been a no-no. Pulling her silences the police and lets Obama, Sharpton and Co. play their games.
This is the new journalism.
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