September 4, 2009

Burying the lede, and everything else*

Gary Scott posts about a Conde Nast article missing from the web site in Burying the lede, and everything else*:

"David Folkenflik had a fascinating and highly disturbing piece today on Morning Edition about a story written by reporter Scott Anderson for GQ that was buried so deep it's been scrubbed from the Internet. The story was entitled 'Vladimir Putin's Dark Rise to Power.' From NPR's web story:
[Anderson's] investigative piece, published in the September American edition of GQ, challenges the official line on a series of bombings that killed hundreds of people in 1999 in Russia. It profiles a former KGB agent who spoke in great detail and on the record, at no small risk to himself. But instead of trumpeting his reporting, GQ's corporate owners went to extraordinary lengths to try to ensure no Russians will ever see it.
The corporate owners don't seem to have any concerns over the accuracy of the story or with Anderson's safety. An email from Jerry S. Birenz, a lawyer for Conde Nast, the corporate owner of GQ, indicates financial motives were at play:
[Birenz] ordered that the article could not be posted to the magazine's Web site. No copies of the American edition of the magazine could be sent to Russia or shown in any country to Russian government officials, journalists or advertisers. Additionally, the piece could not be published in other Conde Nast magazines abroad, nor publicized in any way.
Scott also reported that Gawker is working on a Russian translation of the GQ story and has scanned the article.

Also reporting on the missing article was the New York Times


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