Saturday, August 06, 2005

Veni, Vidi, and Vindication

Dan Cohen has an opinions piece in today's Minneapolis Star Tribune. Cohen takes journalists to task for their hypocrisy in defending New York Times reporter Judith Miller, who is ostensibly in jail for protecting an anonymous source.

Cohen was once an anonymous source. In 1982, he provided publicly-available arrest records of a candidate for statewide office to the media, in exchange for a promise of confidentiality. The Star Tribune and the St. Paul Pioneer Press each broke their promises of confidentiality to Cohen. He was immediately fired from his advertising job. The U.S. Supreme Court eventually decided Cohen v. Cowles Media, et al, in his favor.

This weblog has noted the hypocrisy of reporters celebrating anonymous sources in the Valerie Plame case, but demonizing Cohen. From the time of the Supreme Court case until very recently, the Star Tribune would not even print letters penned by the former anonymous source. I encouraged him to start a weblog of all the letters they rejected over the years. With this latest piece, it appears that the embargo has been lifted. No apology, but a little bit of vindication.

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