New York magazine writer Gabriel Sherman has been the liberal media’s leading investigator/prosecutor of former Fox News boss Roger Ailes and the network’s settlement with Gretchen Carlson on sexual harassment claims. Now Evan Gahr in the New York Observer reports that Sherman didn’t exactly come clean with readers about lengthy negotiations to get hired by MSNBC:
While Sherman was busy writing about the travails of MSNBC’s key competitor for New York, he didn’t tell readers and at least one key editor about his lengthy negotiations with MSNBC and NBC for a paid gig. He had an obvious financial incentive to make FNC look as bad as possible.
Print editor Jared Hohlt conceded this week under fierce questioning that he “didn’t have knowledge” of Sherman’s talks, which reportedly went on for quite some time. Pressed on why readers were kept in the dark, Hohlt scurried off the phone and said New York magazine publicist Lauren Starke would call back....Starke called back just moments later and said editor-in-chief Adam Moss knew about the negotiations....
More importantly, why did Sherman keep readers in the dark? Why did Moss need this crucial information from him but readers didn’t? “There was nothing [for them] to be aware of,” she insisted.
Really? Journalists are ultimately supposed to be writing and reporting for their readers. Those who read Sherman’s stories on FNC should have been allowed to make their own decision about whether his negotiations with NBC were relevant? By any objective standard they were.
Gahr suggested the media doesn’t seem to have any ethical limitations about getting hired by one network as you’re trying to depose a top official at another. "Suppose a plaintiff’s lawyer did not tell his client that he was trying to get a job with the defendant. He would rightfully land in trouble with the local bar association." But network news isn't like that.
From there, Gahr turned to his own personal favorite media story – a lawsuit against Ed Schultz by former NBC producer Michael Queen, who claims Schultz promised him 25 percent of future proceeds if he would help Schultz land a TV show. Unsurprisingly, Sherman wasn’t interested in any juicy stories emanating from leftist networks he might want to join:
How is all this not a story for Sherman but the machinations at FNC over its then president’s legal woes required almost real time coverage? The Griffin matter this summer prompted an investigation by the NBC Universal ombudsman. How is an NBC investigation of the MSNBC president not a story for Sherman but the FNC investigation of Ailes something to report?
And why did Sherman ignore the whole Ed Schultz trial, reported by TV Newser, Mediaite and the Washington Post gossip section?
It might be because MSNBC boss Phil Griffin is in trouble for false testimony:
In videotaped depositions, Griffin insisted he never received Queen’s entreaties and recruited Schultz independently because he just happened to notice him asking Barack Obama a question at his first presidential news conference on February 9, 2009.
Except at the trial, Schultz admitted under cross-examination that he never asked Obama a question.
In fact, no video exists of Schultz and Obama ever being in the same room together, let alone Schultz questioning him. Law professor Geoffrey Hazard Jr., one of the foremost experts on civil procedures, has said that would make it hard to argue his statement was an honest mistake. The key standard for perjury is whether the person knowingly made false and misleading statements.
Other reporters, like Hadas Gold at Politico in June, can run long interviews with Griffin and signal they have no interest in whether he's committed perjury.