The Washington Post reporter who was reinstated after being suspended for her tweets that had been made within the wake of NBA legend Kobe Bryant’s sudden passing is now calling on the paper’s editor to publicly clarify why she was punished to start with.
Washington Publish Managing Editor Tracy Grant issued an announcement on Tuesday addressing the controversy surrounding political reporter Felicia Sonmez, whom critics slammed for sharing a report concerning the sexual assault allegation towards Bryant because the information of his tragic dying was nonetheless breaking on Sunday.
“After conducting an inner overview, we have now decided that, whereas we take into account Felicia’s tweets ill-timed, she was not in clear and direct violation of our social media coverage,” Grant mentioned. “Reporters on social media symbolize The Washington Publish, and our coverage states ‘we should be ever aware of preserving the status of The Washington Publish for journalistic excellence, equity, and independence.’ We persistently urge restraint, which is especially necessary when there are tragic deaths. We remorse having spoken publicly a few personnel matter.”
Now, Sonmez is defiantly calling on Govt Editor Marty Baron to clarify what went on behind the paper’s dealing with of the controversy.
“I imagine that Washington Publish readers and staff, together with myself, deserve to listen to straight from Marty Baron on the newspaper’s dealing with of this matter,” Sonmez mentioned in an announcement Tuesday. “Washington Publish journalists endeavor to reside as much as the paper’s mission assertion, which states, ‘The newspaper shall inform ALL the reality as far as it could possibly be taught it, regarding the necessary affairs of America and the world.'”
“My suspension, and Mr. Baron’s Jan. 26 electronic mail warning me that my tweets a few matter of public report had been ‘hurting this establishment,’ have sadly sown confusion concerning the depth of administration’s dedication to this objective,” she continued.
“I hope Washington Publish newsroom leaders won’t solely prioritize their staff’ security within the face of threats of bodily hurt but in addition be sure that no journalist can be punished for talking the reality,” Sonmez added.
The Washington Publish declined to remark.
Earlier within the night, The Washington Publish Newspaper Guild issued a response to Sonmez’s reinstatement, welcoming the choice however expressing disappointment that the paper’s assertion didn’t provide an apology to the reporter, and condemned the employer for not prioritizing its workers.
“We stay involved that The Publish didn’t take swift motion to offer her with safety and help. We urge the corporate to prioritize worker security above all else,” the Guild wrote.
Sonmez was slammed on social media for sharing a 2016 story about 2003 rape allegations from The Every day Beast headlined, “Kobe Bryant’s Disturbing Rape Case: The DNA Proof, the Accuser’s Story, and the Half-Confession,” as particulars of the helicopter crash had been nonetheless trickling out.
Sonmez doubled down with quite a few follow-up tweets after her preliminary message was hit with an onslaught of backlash, writing that the response was “eye-opening” and claiming she acquired abuse and dying threats.
“Any public figure is worth remembering in their totality… even if that public figured is beloved and that totality unsettling,” Sonmez wrote. “That folks are responding with rage & threats toward me… speaks volumes about the pressure people come under to stay silent in these cases.”
Sonmez finally deleted the tweets, however her employer wasn’t happy and positioned her on administrative go away pending a overview.
“Nationwide political reporter Felicia Sonmez was positioned on administrative go away whereas The Publish opinions whether or not tweets concerning the dying of Kobe Bryant violated The Publish newsroom’s social media coverage. The tweets displayed poor judgment that undermined the work of her colleagues,“ Grant advised Fox Information on the time.
The Publish’s punishment of its reporter then confronted its personal backlash from contained in the paper, together with from the Guild, in addition to from its media critic Eric Wemple, who knocked his employer’s “misguided” suspension of Sonmez for sharing a “superb story” from The Every day Beast concerning the misconduct claims towards Bryant.
Wemple revealed from his personal interview with Sonmez that The Publish condemned her for the tweets as a result of “they did not ‘pertain'” to her “protection space” and that “your conduct on social media is making it more durable for others to do their work as Washington Publish journalists.”
“A few ideas about these objections: One, if journalists at The Publish are susceptible to suspension for tweeting tales off their beats, your entire newsroom needs to be on administrative go away,” Wemple wrote. “Two, the rivalry that sharing a hyperlink to a information article complicates the work of others requires supporting proof.”
Fox Information’ Brian Flood contributed to this report.