April 9, 2020

Washington Post Suspends a Reporter After Her Tweets on Kobe Bryant

She deleted the three tweets after being told to do so by Tracy Grant, the newspaper’s managing editor, but not before other journalists captured them in screen shots.

The Post confirmed the suspension on Monday, but didn’t specify which of the tweets had prompted it to take action.

“National political reporter Felicia Sonmez was placed on administrative leave while The Post reviews whether tweets about the death of Kobe Bryant violated the Post newsroom’s social media policy,” Ms. Grant said in a statement. “The tweets displayed poor judgment that undermined the work of her colleagues.”

After Ms. Sonmez deleted the tweets on Sunday, she received an email from Ms. Grant acknowledging the threats she had received.

“Thank you for deleting the tweets,” Ms. Grant wrote to her in an email that Ms. Sonmez shared with The Times. “You might want to consider a hotel or a friend’s place for this evening.”

The reaction among Ms. Sonmez’s colleagues started to emerge on Monday with a post on Erik Wemple Blog, The Post’s media criticism column, and in a letter that was organized by the NewsGuild, the union that represents Post journalists, and signed by more than 130 staff members, including the paper’s most prominent reporters.

In his post, Mr. Wemple called the suspension “misguided.”

The letter signed by Post journalists, which was addressed to Mr. Baron and Ms. Grant, criticized how the paper handled the matter.

Article source: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/27/business/media/kobe-bryant-washington-post-felicia-sonmez.html?emc=rss&partner=rss

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