In a strongly worded statement posted yesterday afternoon, the Gawker Media Editorial Staff reacted to managing editor Nick Denton’s takedown of a controversial story that purported to out a high-profile media executive.
Our union drive has expressed at every stage of the process that one of our core goals is to protect the editorial independence of Gawker Media sites from the influence of business-side concerns. Today’s unprecedented breach of the firewall, in which business executives deleted an editorial post over the objections of the entire executive editorial staff, demonstrated exactly why we seek greater protection. Our opinions on the post are not unanimous but we are united in objecting to editorial decisions being made by a majority of non-editorial managers. Disagreements about editorial judgment are matters to be resolved by editorial employees. We condemn the takedown in the strongest possible terms.
Gawker’s own J.K. Trotter reported that the managing partnership of Gawker Media voted, 4-2 to remove the post.
“Executive editor Tommy Craggs, who helped edit the piece, and President Heather Dietrick, who reviewed and cleared it before publication in her capacity as Gawker Media’s chief legal counsel, were the only partners who dissented. […]
The partners who voted to remove the post were Andrew Gorenstein, who serves as the president of advertising and partnerships; chief operating officer Scott Kidder; chief strategy officer Erin Pettigrew; and chief executive officer Nick Denton, who founded Gawker Media in 2002. Along with Tommy Craggs and Heather Dietrick, they belong to Gawker Media’s managing partnership, which Denton established in 2014 and whose members decide on all major company matters.”
Denton confirmed the vote count in a Tweet last night.
In the interest of accuracy: the vote among the managing partners on taking down yesterday's story was 4-2, not 5-1.
— Nick Denton (@nicknotned) July 18, 2015