Tuesday, August 25, 2009

UPDATE: NYT's Ethicist, Randy Cohen, Tells NYTPicker: "On Second Thought I Should Have Identified" Ex-Wife In NYT Column.

Randy Cohen, the NYT's "Ethicist" columnist who earlier today quoted Katha Pollitt in a column as an "expert" without identifying her as his ex-wife, has admitted to The NYTPicker that "on second thought" he should have mentioned the connection.

"I did indeed discuss this with my editor," Cohen told The NYTPicker in an email, "and we felt that the relationship was not germane, but sure, to answer your surprisingly anonymous query, on second thought I should have identified her as you suggest."

Fourteen minutes later, Cohen sent a second, followup email to The NYTPicker.

"And I meant to add that I'll amend the piece to include that; it's a great thing about the web that such a change can be made so swiftly," Cohen wrote.

Indeed, Cohen's "Moral of the Story" blog has now been altered to reflect Cohen's change of heart. "As the writer Katha Pollitt (who is also my ex-wife) puts it..." it now reads. It's also a great thing about the web that such a change can be made without any mention by Cohen on his blog that he altered it.

EARLIER: EXCLUSIVE: Today In NYT Laziness, Ethicist Randy Cohen Interviews His Ex-Wife As "Expert" For Column -- Without Identifying Her.


Kasper Hauser said...

Of course it was germane.

That Cohen discussed it first with his editor just demonstrates that the NYTs has "layers" of ethical lapse.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps he should change the name of his column to "the Unethicist".

Chip S. said...

I've long suspected that the NYT was in bed with The Nation. This confirms it.

ParatrooperJJ said...

Let's not forget that he is not an ethicist, he is a comedian by trade.

nk said...

He is The Ethicist? May I be The Walrus?

orthodoc said...

Was Greg Packer unavailable for comment?