Colin Myler‘s editorship of the New York Daily News, one of the most prominent newspapers in America, has come under renewed scrutiny following allegations that he attempted to intimidate members of the UK parliament investigating phone hacking at the News of the World at the time he led the now-defunct tabloid.
Media monitoring groups and experts in journalistic ethics in America have described the allegations raised against Myler as “horrifying” and “abhorrent”. New York magazine has also published a 5,000-word profile of Myler in its current issue, putting a spotlight on to Myler within the US media that he has assiduously tried to avoid – until now with relative success.
Myler was the final editor of the News of the World from 2007 until it closed last July. In January he was appointed editor-in-chief of the New York Daily News, a job that puts him on the high table of American journalists.
Media monitors in the US have reacted to claims that Myler attempted to bully British MPs investigating the News of the World as anathema to journalistic standards in the US. Eric Boehlert, senior fellow of the progressive watchdog Media Matters, said that the allegation “would put any American newspaper editor in a very uncomfortable position. Anything like it would be seen as completely horrifying and beyond the realm of responsible journalism”.
Edward Wasserman, Knight Foundation professor of journalism ethics at Washington and Lee University, said that if the allegations were correct, it was “such a transparent breach of ethics in that it’s hard to imagine the very idea even being discussed in a US newsroom. Even the most politically zealous journalist would find it abhorrent.”
In his position as editor of the News of the World, Myler is alleged to have instructed a team of six reporters to dig for dirt on every member of the Commons culture select committee that at the time was investigating phone hacking at the British tabloid. Reporters were asked to find out if any of the members had had illicit affairs or were gay.
Read more at the Guardian…
Ben Cohen is the editor and founder of The Daily Banter. He lives in Washington DC where he does podcasts, teaches Martial Arts, and tries to be a good father. He would be extremely disturbed if you took him too seriously.