The challenge facing Sally Buzbee at the Washington Post

Since January, when Marty Baron announced his retirement as editor of the Washington Post, the media beat has hummed with speculation about his replacement: Would it be an internal candidate? Or one of a bevy of editors from the New York Times? Or Ben Smith? So it was impressive yesterday when the Post appointed someone who hadn’t appeared in the guessing game: Sally Buzbee, the executive editor of the Associated Press. Online, the unexpectedness of the hire sparked a mini-debate as to whether media reporting is bad or not; Nieman Lab’s Hanaa’ Tameez asked why we had “to suffer through so many think pieces that ended up being way off?” Management at the Post certainly maintained a high wall of secrecy around the process, blinding not just outside media reporters but the paper’s own staffers, some of whom, the Daily Beast reported recently, were irked by their lack of insight. At one point, the paper’s union wrote to Fred Ryan, the publisher, requesting input into the decision. “Given the confidential and sensitive nature of the executive editor search,” he replied, “we do not plan to broadly address the search process with employees.” Maybe not so impressive after all. The news of Buzbee’s hire was broken, in the end, by Paul Farhi, a media reporter at the Post. (“I was just telling @farhip that I’m looking forward to finding out who the next executive editor of the Washington Post will be via the bot in our Slack telling us that his story about it published,” Elahe... Continue reading at 'Columbia Journalism Review'

[ Columbia Journalism Review | 2021-05-12 12:21:00 UTC ]
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