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About half of New York Times employees said in a recent internal survey that they don’t believe they can speak freely at the paper.
In response to the statement, “There is a free exchange of views in this company; people are not afraid to say what they really think,” only 51% of Times employees responded in the affirmative.
In company comments that accompanied the December poll’s findings, which were viewed by The Post, the 51 percent was noted as being 10% lower than the “benchmark.” One insider said the benchmark likely refers to the average among similar companies surveyed on that statement.
“Although the majority of us feel well-informed, many indicated that differing viewpoints aren’t sought or valued in our work,” read the Times’ internal assessment of the data. “Relatedly, we saw some negative responses on whether there’s a free exchange of views in the company, and scored below the benchmark on this question.”
A total of 74% of Times staffers said leaders and colleagues accept and embrace differences in ethnicity/race — a 10% decline from the results of the same inquiry in 2019.
“We saw steep declines in answers about leaders and colleagues accepting and embracing differences in race, gender, identity and religion. Responses from Black and Latino colleagues declined at an even greater rate,” the paper fretted.
The survey results were revealed to The Post as the former paper of record is embroiled in a seemingly endless parade of scandals. Most recently, a decision to oust veteran science reporter Donald McNeil over his non-derogatory use of a racial slur during a Times-sponsored trip with students has divided the newsroom. A column from their in-house conservative columnist Bret Stephens criticizing the McNeil dismissal was personally spiked by publisher A.G. Sulzberger.
The piece was later published in the New York Post.
In June, The New York Times suffered another woke revolt after the paper’s opinion section published an op-ed from Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton urging that federal soldiers be sent to US cities to quell antifa and BLM violence during the summer. Dozens of employees publicly protested the piece’s publication, saying it put “Black @nytimes staff in danger.” The fallout led to the resignation of Op-Ed editor James Bennet. Other leading opinion staffers, including Bari Weiss, left in the months after Bennet’s departure.
The Times did not respond to multiple requests for comment from The Post.
“There is a group of younger reporters and a fair number of tech people and people on the audio side who do not come out of the tradition of journalism at the Times. … They see their role as to be more active,” Alex Berenson, a former NYT business reporter, told The Post. “There’s a lot of anguish among older people” about younger, woke staff, he added.
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