A New York Times decision to publish the name of the street and town where Ferguson police Officer Darren Wilson lives with his new wife is causing a storm of controversy
The Times defends its decision as simple news coverage, but Wilson supporters say it amounted to providing a target on a couple who is already the subject of death threats.
One conservative website even published the home addresses of the two Times reporters, Julie Bosman and Campbell Robertson, who shared a byline on the story, sarcastically noting that it would be “wrong to publish the addresses of journalists without their consent.”
“How does it advance the story to know where Darren Wilson and his newly wed live?” Internet journalist Charles Johnson asked on Gotnews.com.
(Johnson made news in October when he published the address of an Ebola patient “so that people could avoid going to her Houston apartment.”)
The Washington Examiner took up the story Tuesday, asking the New York Times to justify the decision.
“The story mentions only the name of the street where the couple have a house and that street has been widely reported on,” Eileen Murphy, head of communications at the New York Times, said Tuesday in an email, the Examiner reported.
However, the Examiner noted that The Times original posting included an image of the couple’s marriage license that included the address of the Clayton, Mo., law firm where the marriage license was issued.
That image was removed from The Times report.
“When it was pointed out that the license contained a street address, we thought the right thing to do was to remove it, so we did,” Murphy told the Examiner.
So, The Times saw fit to remove an image that contained the street address of a law firm that no one cares about, while leaving in a story the name of a small street that contains the home of a couple targeted for death by extremist “activists.”
All the news that fits, they print.
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