Baquet and Keller Respond, Again [Nathan Goulding]
Dean Baquet (editor, L.A. Times) and Bill Keller (executive editor, New York Times) have co-authored an op-ed in the NYT today regarding what secrets their papers decide to publish.
Our reports — like earlier press disclosures of secret measures to combat terrorism — revived an emotional national debate, featuring angry calls of "treason" and proposals that journalists be jailed along with much genuine concern and confusion about the role of the press in times like these. [...]
Our job, especially in times like these, is to bring our readers information that will enable them to judge how well their elected leaders are fighting on their behalf, and at what price.
Like all prior editorials and letters in defense of their actions, Baquet and Keller don't address the fact that their readers also include individuals who intend to harm us — terrorists — and that those individuals will use any information they can to gain an advantage in this war. And, if this is what people perceive is happening, calls of "treason" and jailing journalists aren't going to be far away.
There are times when publishing classified information could be the right decision, and there are times when it is not. As evidenced by the extreme response to the banking story, there are also times when editors get it wrong.
07/01 02:51 PMShare