The New York Times is reportedly blocking its reporters from appearing on liberal cable news programs such as MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show” and “CNN Tonight” with Don Lemon because they’re “too partisan,” but critics think the Gray Lady needs to look in the mirror.
Vanity Fair reported that Times' executive editor Dean Baquet is concerned that his reporters who appear on particular programs would be "perceived as being aligned" with the show's far-left politics.
Media Research Center vice president Dan Gainor mocked the situation, essentially labeling the Times as hypocrites in the process.
“This isn't a news story, it's a sitcom plot. The nation's most liberal paper is suddenly concerned that the wacky network filled on air with its employees might be too far left,” Gainor told Fox News. “The Times is liberal on the opinion and news pages on every major issue facing the nation -- from abortion to taxes. Yet, MSNBC is even further left? Does anyone at The Times read their own paper?”
Conservative strategist Chris Barron echoed Gainor’s reaction to the Vanity Fair story.
“I don’t know whether to laugh or cry at this story,” Barron told Fox news. “Has anyone from the New York Times actually read the New York Times? If they want to avoid the appearance of overt partisanship they might try taking a look in the mirror first.”
“Has anyone from the New York Times actually read the New York Times? If they want to avoid the appearance of overt partisanship they might try taking a look in the mirror first.”
Fox News’ Sean Hannity said the Times is “scared” and has been “duped by the conspiracy TV media mob.” The “Hannity” namesake sarcastically asked, “Why would the New York Times not go on their favorite programs?”
NewsBusters managing editor Curtis Houck called the report “one of the more peculiar and obviously ironic” media stories possible.
“There's no denying that the [Times] is right about MSNBC primetime shows, as they are hotbeds for the Resistance, but if MSNBC is that home on TV, The New York Times is without a doubt their paper equivalent,” Houck told Fox News. “So while it's nice they're realizing something that a lot of us already know about how biased they are, it would behoove them to take care of matters in their own newsroom first.”
Rewire News editor-in-chief Jodi Jacobson thinks the Times “jumped the entire school of sharks,” while BuzzMachine's Jeff Jarvis said the report is "bad for the Times, for journalism, for an informed public, and just dumb."
DePauw University professor and media critic Jeffrey McCall feels differently, telling Fox News that it’s “wise” for the Times to carefully assess where its reporters appear as guests.
“News outlets such as the Times need to protect their more objective reporters from the appearance that they are playing a partisan role for a broadcast outlet's benefit. The news industry already suffers from public perception that real reporters are agenda-driven, and trotting reporters into opinion shows just fuels that problem,” McCall said. “In a sense, partisan television interview shows want to use real reporters as props to borrow the credibility of direct news reporting to support their opinion angles.”
McCall feels that news organizations should just let their objective news stories speak for themselves without having to “trot out those reporters to engage in chit-chat” with partisan pundits.
The New York Times did not immediately respond to a request for comment.