Two of Gawker’s top editors resigned Monday after management deleted a story about an executive at Conde Nast who allegedly tried to book an escort.
Tommy Craggs, executive editor of Gawker Media, and Max Read, editor in chief of Gawker.com, said they quit because they could no longer guarantee that editorial integrity would trump the company’s perceived business interests.
“Advertisers such as Discover and BFGoodrich were either putting holds on their campaigns or pulling out entirely” as a result of the story, Craggs said in a memo to editorial staff.
Gawker Media management, including company founder and owner Nick Denton, voted Friday to remove the post about the executive. The story, which accused the married male executive of soliciting sex from a male escort, drew widespread criticism after its publication Thursday.
In a blog post Friday, Denton said he regretted ever posting the story.
“We are proud of running stories that others shy away from, often to preserve relationships or access,” Denton wrote. “But the line has moved. And Gawker has an influence and audience that demands greater editorial restraint.
“Gawker is no longer the insolent blog that began in 2003. It does important and interesting journalism about politicians, celebrities and other major public figures. This story about the former Treasury Secretary’s brother does not rise to the level that our flagship site should be publishing.”
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