Ever hear of Quinn Norton?

If you did, you’ve got one on me….until now, that is,

The New York Times announced, Monday, that Norton was hired to be on the paper’s editorial board, and enthused over what a great new member she was.


….as excerpted from Conor Beck’s article at

The New York Times announced Tuesday that Quinn Norton has joined the newspaper’s editorial board, before saying hours later that it is investigating the journalist for past tweets in which she used slurs and discussed her friendships with neo-Nazis.

The Times‘ press office said the paper is “delighted to announce” Quinn will be its “lead opinion writer on the power, culture, and consequences of technology.”

“We’re excited to have Quinn to help our readers understand what’s possible and what’s sensible, and where we’re all headed,” the announcement read.

Twitter users quickly flagged Norton’s past controversial tweets, including ones in which she said that she is “friends with various neo-Nazis”—though she clarified that she has “never agreed with them”—and used various slurs.

Mr. Beck goes on to show specific examples of Norton’s tweets.  I urge you to use the link and read them for yourself.

If this is how the Times selects its editorial board members – i.e. without doing the kind of basic checking that would have led them to what these twitter users had no problem coming up with – then maybe it explains a lot about their editorials on other subjects as well.

And when the selection of someone sporting an amicable history with people she knows to be neo-nazis is taken along with the Times’ long-term animus against Israel, you have to at least wonder if there’s a connection in there somewhere.

Do I think the Times is pro-nazi?  No.  But by hiring a Quinn Norton, the Times self-creates a reason to mull it over.


UPDATE:  The New York Times has just announced they have fired Quinn Norton.

That didn’t take long, did it?

A great many people are going to nail The Times for hiring Norton in the first place. As they should.

But that is not the key issue.

The key issue is how amazingly inept the New York Times was  when vetting Norton; how completely they missed such easily attainable information about who and what she is.

Can this possibly be typical of the research that goes into The Times’ editorials and articles as well?

If so, it certainly explains a lot about the paper’s overall quality in recent years.

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