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Thursday, July 18, 2024

Bezos still has former Murdoch fake journalists working for the Washington Post

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos still employs at least two former phony media figures who worked for toxic tabloid publisher Rupert Murdoch of Fox News in key positions at the Post.
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Jeff Bezos (CNN)

Insiders at The Washington Post say the uproar that sent on British taabloid executive packing before event starting his job was good news but they add that the former editor who worked for Fox News and its tabloid publisher Rupert Murdock is still at the Post and destroys any hope for saving the journaalism record of the daily newspaper of Washington, DC.

“Will Lewis needs to step down for the good of The Post and the public. He has lost the newsroom and will never win it back,” says former reporter Scott Higham, a Pulitzer Prize winner who left the Post in March. Lewis is the former Murdoch employee hired by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, and says he continues to support him.

Reports The New York Times:

Will Lewis, the chief executive of The Post, confirmed the news in an email to employees.

“It is with regret that I share with you that Robert Winnett has withdrawn from the position of editor at The Washington Post,” Mr. Lewis wrote. “Rob has my greatest respect and is an incredibly talented editor and journalist.”

Mr. Winnett earned a reputation as an unassuming newshound whose relentless pursuit of scoops earned him the nickname “Rat Boy.” But on Friday, several Washington Post journalists told The Times that, in light of the recent reports about him, they were relieved that Mr. Winnett would not be leading their newsroom.

“Rat Boy is out!” one journalist said in a text message.

Mr. Lewis told Post employees in early June that Mr. Winnett would take over as The Post’s editor after the U.S. presidential election in November. Matt Murray, the former editor in chief of The Wall Street Journal, would replace Ms. Buzbee in an interim role until then.

In his email on Friday, Mr. Lewis said that Mr. Murray would continue as The Post’s top editor until after the U.S. elections. He said that The Post was planning to put in place a new division, focused on service and social media journalism, sometime in the first quarter of next year. Mr. Murray was expected to take over the new division at the time Mr. Winnett’s appointment was announced.

Mr. Winnett’s decision is a major setback for Mr. Lewis, who has also repeatedly come under fire in recent weeks.

The Times reported on June 5 that he clashed with Ms. Buzbee over a decision to cover a court development mentioning him in a phone hacking case. Mr. Lewis has denied pressuring Ms. Buzbee. The next day, an NPR reporter said that Mr. Lewis had promised him an exclusive interview in exchange for ignoring a story about phone hacking. In response, Mr. Lewis called that reporter an “activist” and acknowledged having an off-the-record conversation with him.

Last week, The New York Times reported that Mr. Lewis and Mr. Winnett were said to have used fraudulently obtained records in news articles at the Sunday Times newspaper in London. The next day, The Washington Post followed up with a 3,000-word investigation into Mr. Winnett that traced his ties to John Ford, a private investigator who acknowledged using unethical methods to obtain big exclusives.

Much of the angst in the newsroom from those revelations has been expressed privately. But David Maraniss, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist at The Post, wrote on Facebook on Wednesday: “I don’t know a single person at the Post who thinks the current situation with the publisher and supposed new editor can stand. There might be a few, but very very few.”

Bezos says he wants the Post to have a “better business plan” to offset a $77 million loss last year amid declining wubscribers and complaints from readers who say the paper has lost its luster.

In comments tot he stories about Lewis, Winnett and Bezoes, readers say they are cancelling thier subscriptions and won’ t be back..

Asked Times reader David Henry: “There are probably 100 people who qualify for the job, and they pick this train-wreck?”

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