Mark Thompson may not be right person to run New York Times, says senior editor
Nikhil Kumar is The Independent's New York correspondent. He was formerly assistant editor on the foreign desk and has also done a variety of jobs on the city desk, where he wrote about markets, commodities and other business and economics topics.
Thursday 25 October 2012
A senior New York Times editor has voiced concerns about Mark Thompson, the paper's incoming chief executive and former BBC boss, who was in charge when Newsnight shelved a report into sexual abuse claims against Jimmy Savile.
Mr Thompson, who is due to take over at the New York Times Company next month, has said he was not told about the Newsnight investigation until after it had been axed, nor was he involved in the decision to drop it.
The former BBC Director-General claims to have become aware of the investigation only later, when the subject was brought up by a BBC correspondent at a drinks reception in December 2011.
But the readers' ombudsman at The New York Times raised a series of troubling questions about Mr Thompson's appointment to one of the most coveted jobs in the US media. The questions came as the newspaper was reported to have dispatched a journalist to London to look into the Savile scandal.
In a posting on the paper's website, Margaret Sullivan, the public editor, said: "It's worth considering now whether he is the right person for the job, given this turn of events." She suggested that it was time to ask a number of questions, including: "How likely is it the [New York] Times Company will continue with its plan to bring Mr Thompson on as chief executive? (It's worth noting that as public editor, I have no inside knowledge on such corporate matters.) His integrity and decision-making are bound to affect The Times – and its journalism – profoundly."
She said the paper needed to scrutinise what Mr Thompson knew, and when, about what happened at the BBC. It was also incumbent on it to consider the implications of his appointment, given he was arriving with "so much unwanted baggage".
The paper could not immediately be reached for comment yesterday.
Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes
Game of Thrones author George RR Martin says 'f*** you' to fans who fear he will die before finishing Westeros saga
Loom bands: Bids for dress made from colourful rubber pass £170,000 on eBay
Supermoon 2014: When and why will the moon look bigger and brighter this summer?
Tommy Ramone dies: Last surviving founder and drummer seminal punk band The Ramones dies aged 62
Gaza-Israel conflict: The terrible price Palestinian children are paying for Israel’s war with Hamas
- 1 Game of Thrones author George RR Martin says 'f*** you' to fans who fear he will die before finishing Westeros saga
- 2 Loom bands: Bids for dress made from colourful rubber pass £170,000 on eBay
- 3 Why I'm on the brink of burning my Israeli passport
- 4 L'Oreal cuts ties with Belgium supporter Axelle Despiegelaere after hunting trip photographs
- 5 The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week
£28000 - £32000 per annum + pension, 25 days holiday: Ashdown Group: A highly ...
£30000 - £40000 per annum: Deerfoot IT Resources Limited: Sales Engineer - Cow...
competitive: Progressive Recruitment: My client who are a leading publisher in...
£45-£57k OTE £75k : Charter Selection: Major London International Fashion and ...