Via Adam Weinstein’s Tumblr: So my view on what happened last night is that it was a symptom of that deficit. Having checked out of the staff’s chat system, my first look at the story was when it published. Even if I had known it was in the works, I’d have had absolutely no control over it. But I wish I did.
My concerns were, first, that we’d be doing the work of either an unstable or unsavory escort, and second, that we hadn’t established the newsworthiness of the story or Geithner, its subject. I’ve written stories outing cads before; but one was a moralizing congressman, and one was an NSA-defending electronic-privacy hypocrite and war-college professor who was engaging in the sort of behavior for which his pupils – prospective admirals and captains – could be prosecuted. Gawker has written about the sexual orientation of public people before, but those cases have been, to my mind, more defensible: You can make an argument for the newsworthiness of a Fox News broadcaster, already branded as qualitatively different from most of his coworkers, reportedly having to play down his sexual identity for a conservative employer. I might not have made the call to publish that myself, but I was not ashamed to work someplace that did publish it.