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Did Edward Snowden hurt the New York Times’ feelings?

Why is one of the biggest stories of the past few years, and perhaps the biggest leak in U.S. history, being sidelined by the New York Times?

The story about the U.S. government’s surveillance tactics got even “better” on Sunday, as the man who leaked it became public in a YouTube video. Edward Snowden was interviewed by lawyer and blogger Glenn Greenwald from his hotel room in Hong Kong, where he is currently in hiding.

This story is big. One of the biggest ever, for obvious reasons. Daniel Ellsberg, responsible for leaking the Pentagon Papers, has said that “there has not been in American history a more important leak than Edward Snowden’s release of NSA material.”

No doubt, this is a great story for Greenwald and The Guardian. You know, one of the most important newspapers in the world? It’s quite well known.

But maybe not. Former Haaretz Editor-in-Chief Dov Alfon posted a screenshot on his Facebook wall of how the New York Times decided to refer to The Guardian. Simply as “a British newspaper” (click for larger image):

As Snowden’s name spread over the web and became the lead story of every respectable news outlet, this is how the NYT homepage looked, compared to The Guardian’s at 14:00 (Israel local time. Click for larger image):

That’s it, just below the (important, yes) story on immigration.

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    1. rsgengland

      Glenn Greenwald interviewing Snowdon is par for the course, and expected.
      Greenwald, and his newspaper The Guardian, share a reputation for their anti-American, anti-Israel and anti-Western stance.
      They are reminders of a bygone age, where the ‘left’ blindly supported the Soviet Union/Communism, while Stalin was murdering and starving millions of Russian to death.
      They prey on the West because of its open, free, uncensored society, because its’ easy.
      They ignore the ‘despots and dictators’ because reporting on them takes more effort, and is often dangerous to life and limb, and suffer the romanticism and perverted logic that says that the West is the cause of all the worlds ills’.

      Reply to Comment
      • Carl

        I’m going to take a wild guess and say it’s been some time since you read a newspaper.


        Reply to Comment
        • sinai

          …. you made my day 🙂

          Reply to Comment
      • ekim

        your should have been an assistant to McCarthy. Such rhetoric is not only outdated, but flat unrepresentative of Greenwald’s nuanced arguments or (ahem) the entire newspaper called The Guardian. Wake up, the Cold War ended long ago.

        Reply to Comment
      • Danaa

        Really, now. Stalin? what next – Marx himself?

        Reply to Comment
    2. Kolumn9

      From personal experience I can assure you that for the overwhelming majority of Americans the Guardian is just another British newspaper of which they have never heard.

      You are reading too much into it.

      Reply to Comment
        • Kolumn9

          It must be hard to be a writer and be so sensitive to criticism.

          From your link..

          “Not very many people other than the news cognoscenti know about The Guardian,” said Alan D. Mutter, a lecturer for the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California, Berkeley, and a former newspaper editor. He added that The Guardian was “very much a new, marginal entrant into an already very busy, very fragmented U.S. media market.”

          Reply to Comment
          • Yes, but the NYT still uses the word Guardian, which was my point. Which not only proves you to be a d——d with comprehension problems, it also bans you from my channel.

            The way you twist words is tiring. As if I didn’t know most Americans haven’t heard about The Guardian. Gimme a break. You know very well that the NYT and its readers have heard about the Guardian, and of course you said nothing about the home page. So, I’ll keep reading into things – and you can quit reading +972. It’ll spare you the heartburn. And mine from your idiotic comments.

            I’ve had enough of your spins and garbage talk and your last ad hominem attack was your last. Bye.

            Reply to Comment
          • Kiwi

            Comment deleted

            Reply to Comment
          • My doctor recommended banning you, too.

            Reply to Comment
          • annie

            i was over at my mom’s house tonight (i don’t have a tv) and this was all over the 5 o’clock news. it’s sort of a big story here. what difference does it make which news outlet interviewed him? it doesn’t. it’s a big story.

            if you don’t think it’s a big deal you should talk to the US gov, cuz they are treating it like a big deal. i don’t even recall channel 5 or 7 mentioning the guardian but they were running clips from the interview. i think the last thing on people’s minds was who recorded the interview. i seriously doubt most viewers even knew it was greenwald conducting the interview.

            the nyt is lame not to do it’s own deep reporting into this. the story has legs, lots of them.

            but remember the nyt is the same publication that held back the story of nsa spying during the election cycle of bush’s 2nd term. they released the news right after the election at the request of the WH.

            Reply to Comment
          • emil

            Yes I agree with you about the NYT

            Reply to Comment
    3. Would the NYT (or The Guardian) print a story revealing the shocking news that the world’s most important governments — whether due to bribery by the CEOs of large corporations or out of mere caprice — have resolutely acted as if in a conspiracy to bring down the whole world via non-response to climate change?

      Guess not. Not news. Sigh.

      Reply to Comment
      • Carl

        Don’t guess Pabelmont: read.

        It’s in The Guardian every week. At least. For years. And years.

        Reply to Comment
      • The Trespasser

        No reporter ever would report something REALLY big, for obvious reasons.

        As of this particular story – US and British governments are employing ECHELON for over 50 years. Really no surprise that the system was modified to suit modern reality.

        Reply to Comment
        • Khaled Khalid

          Tresspasser (too chicken to use your own name still.)

          “Echelon” is used by Israel’s Mossad to snoop on everyone.

          Prism is used by America’s NSA and Britain’s GCHQ under MI6.

          Reply to Comment
          • The Trespasser

            Dude, you know nothing. Just nothing. Probably not even how to make falafel.

            ECHELON is a name used in global media and in popular culture to describe a signals intelligence (SIGINT) collection and analysis network operated on behalf of the five signatory states to the UKUSA Security Agreement[1] (Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States…

            Reply to Comment
          • JG

            Hail Trespisser, he is capable of cut & paste if he doesn’t know what to answer. lmao

            Reply to Comment
    4. Jealousy

      The NYT is definitely jealous that they are getting scooped on this story, the type of story they used to own. The paper has some fine reporters, and its editorial line is sometimes enlightened, but since at least since the second Clinton administration, it has increasingly reflect the same consensus, permanent-Washington-elite agenda that (mostly)cripples the WaPo.

      This agenda transcends the middling Democrat/Republican dichotomy and instead reflects the received wisdom of the chattering classes. I find it amusing that Snowden chose to reach out to the Post rather than the Times when he chose to blow his whistle. Compare this to the WikiLeaks history and imagine the burn they feel on Manhattan’s 8th Avenue.

      On the Guardian specifically, of course the Times knows that its readership is quite familiar with the Guardian — one of the Times own recent achievements relied completely on the reporting of the British newspaper. And the name “Guardian” ran repeatedly in every story.

      Recall that the Guardian broke the phone hacking stories that ended up shuttering the “News of the World” Britain’s largest tabloid and currently sees former NotW editor Rebecca Brooks heading to criminal trial. The Guardian did great work on the scandal for years, only to have London’s cozy political/media clique pay the stories almost no attention whatsoever. It was mutual ass-covering by inattention.

      Enter the NYT. As I understand it, Guardian staffers, frustated by the lack of traction their scoops had gained in the U.K., reached out to their professional colleagues at the Times and sold them on the story’s merit. The NYT then re-reported the Guardian’s original work, crediting them dutifully. It was ‘the Guardian this’ and ‘the Guardian that’ all through the Times’ articles.

      Only when the hacking stories started showing up in “The Paper of Record” did outrage begin to pick up momentum on the other side of the Atlantic. The case then broke wide open.

      So, yeah, NYT readers — and many many more in the U.S. — are likely not only familiar with the Guardian and its stature, they’re likely to be regular readers of it as well.

      And, yeah, the Times’ omission of the Guardian’s name speaks volumes.

      Reply to Comment
    5. kmansfield

      I think the reference to a “foreign” paper is part of an attempt to stitch-up Snowden as being a double agent, leaking secrets to another country, never mind the sharing because of Echelon and menwithhill.

      Tommy Vietor (Former NSC spokesman for President Obama) ended up apologizing for doing the same. Just like PJ Crowley and the mob, once they’re in the club they can never really quit.




      I think Blake Houndsell, editor of FP and the constellation of analysts and spies that floats around him were doing the same on twitter.

      Reply to Comment
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