"[Subscriber cancellations are] one of the metrics for 'outrage' that they take to distinguish between 'real' outrage and superficial outrage," writer Sarah Jeong tweeted on Friday. She was responding to author Siva Vaidhyanathan, who criticized the boycott after a report revealed information about the whistleblower who filed a complaint over President Trump's phone conversation with the president of Ukraine.
"I'm as frustrated with @nytimes as anyone. But an individual canceling a subscription does nothing. It's self-indulgent. It's not a movement or a boycott. Even if it did matter it would hurt many great journalists like @nhannahjones @sarahjeong and @jbouie," he said, tagging Jeong.
"You're wrong," Jeong responded, before defending the boycott against her own paper. "What subscribers say can back up dissenting views inside the paper about what it should do and be," she said.
The Times did not immediately respond to Fox News' request for comment Saturday.
The exchange came as the Times faced several controversies that prompted a backlash from the public. Earlier in the summer, left-leaning politicians and media figures blasted the Times over its decision to publish a headline they suggested was too favorable for Trump. After deleting the headline, the staff held a meeting in which a staffer complained that some people thought the paper was too liberal.
“We are not f—ing part of the resistance," a staffer said, referring to the liberal, anti-Trump movement. Jeong herself attracted criticism for the paper when unearthed tweets showed her making racially insensitive comments about white people.
“Oh man it's kind of sick how much joy I get out of being cruel to old white men,” Jeong wrote in July 2014 in one of several old messages that have gone viral. The Times responded to the backlash in 2018 by declaring that it had reviewed her social media history during the hiring process and was standing by the decision to bring her aboard.
Fox News' Brian Flood contributed to this report.