New York Times Dismisses Two Controversial Reporters For Racial Slurs, Sham Podcasts

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Bruce Haring
·1 min read
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The New York Times has severed ties with two reporters that produced some of its highest-profile work in the last three years.

Executive editor Dean Baquet and managing editor Joe Kahn sent out memos Friday revealing the departures of Donald G. McNeil Jr., a science correspondent who reported on the pandemic, and Andy Mills, a producer for the podcast Caliphate that used a phony source.

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Both had seemed to survive the disclosure of past misbehaviors. But an uproar from the Times staff and those outside the organization made their continued employment untenable.

McNeil reported used a “racist slur” while on a Times-sponsored field trip with students in 2019. Mills caused the media giant major embarrassment when the podcast series Caliphate largely relied on the assertions of a man who had no ties to the Islamic state.

Baquet and Kahn wrote that McNeil “has done much good reporting over four decades,” but added, “that this is the right next step.”

In the case of Mills, the errors in the podcast were attributed to “an institutional failing” by Baquet. Mills was later accused of bad behavior toward women in his previous employment at WNYC, New York’s public radio outlet.

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