This post is by Josh Feldman from Mediaite
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The New York Times executive editor Dean Baquet has responded to criticism from readers that they “downplayed” or at least didn’t devote enough coverage to the accusation of sexual assault against President Donald Trump by writer E. Jean Carroll, detailed in her upcoming book––an excerpt of which ran in New York Magazine last week. The Times was criticized on social media not just for devoting insufficient coverage to the story, but for running it in the books section:
The president was credibly accused of a violent rape on Friday and the New York Times covered in the BOOKS SECTION. pic.twitter.com/nK7qDb7H3h— jess mcintosh (@jess_mc) June 24, 2019
Marty Baron's crew thought a new and credible rape allegation against POTUS was front page news. Dean Baquet's editors thought the book section was right, with no home page play. We don't know the reason. But we're supposed to talk it online. We're the public editors now. https://t.co/kL6VV68BNf — Jay Rosen (@jayrosen_nyu) June 23, 2019
Even in the @nytimes' books section, the ghetto to which this story was sent, it's only the 15th-highest story on the page, not featured in the top hero. pic.twitter.com/hSpnkSvc3R — Joshua Benton (@jbenton) June 22, 2019
Baquet today responded and acknowledged critics had a point:
He said the critics were right that The Times had underplayed the article, though he said it had not been because of deference to the president. He pointed out that The Times had written some of the earliest stories about Mr. Trump’s alleged abuse of women, and that its coverage of Harvey Weinstein helped spark the #MeToo movement, but in this case, he said, “We were overly cautious.”The Times explains that while a reporter spoke to Carroll and two women she told about the alleged assault, “The Times did not find independent sources who could verify her account at the time of the article’s publication, or any other additional corroboration.” You can read the Times‘ full response here.