Of course minutes after we wrote that Gawker staffers had remained oddly quiet about the Jordan Sargent post that disturbingly outed a married executive, Nick Denton speaks. The end result? The post has been deleted.
Gawker Media’s managing team (Andrew Gorenstein, Heather Dietrick, Scott Kidder, Erin Pettigrew, Tom Plunkett and Tommy Craggs) voted 4-2 to remove the post. Dietrick and Craggs, the latter of whom edited the post, were the dissenters. Craggs’ vote sounds about right to us.
“The point of this story was not in my view sufficient to offset the embarrassment to the subject and his family,” wrote Denton. “Accordingly, I have had the post taken down. It is the first time we have removed a significant news story for any reason other than factual error or legal settlement.”
Denton noted that the near universal disgust with the article—from outside Gawker and from within—played a part.
“Not only is criticism of yesterday’s piece from readers intense, but much of what they’ve said has resonated,” wrote Denton. “Some of our own writers, proud to work at one of the only independent media companies, are equally appalled.”
Unfortunately, as Denton noted, “This action will not turn back the clock. [Redacted] embarrassment will not be eased. But this decision will establish a clear standard for future stories.”
Thankfully, hours after publishing a piece that likely threw a man’s life into a tailspin, Gawker found the silver lining for Gawker. We should all be happy.
This post originally stated that the vote to take the post down was 5-1 and that Heather Dietrick voted to take the post down. Gawker updated to note that she voted to keep it up; thus making the vote 4-2.