* From the Chicago Newspaper Guild…
Members of the Chicago Sun-Times newsroom have questions for Sun-Times CEO Timothy Knight and its parent company Wrapports board chairman Michael Ferro following the resignation of Chicago Sun-Times political reporter Dave McKinney. McKinney wrote for the Chicago Sun-Times for almost two decades. He co-authored a recent piece about litigation involving a former LeapSource business executive,who alleged that Illinois government candidate Bruce Rauner threatened her, her family and her future job prospects. The story ran with the backing and support of Sun-Times editors, McKinney wrote in his open resignation letter. However, McKinney said after the Rauner campaign pressured his superiors, he was yanked from his beat, placed on leave for a week and then was not allowed back to his political beat. Rauner is reported to be a former investor in Sun-Times Media. This situation raises ethical questions about what happens when politicians and investors interfere with news content.
* The petition…
Mr. Michael Ferro and Mr. Timothy Knight:
We are deeply troubled by the situation leading up to Dave McKinney’s resignation. It raises incredible questions about whether Sun-Times reporters risk retaliation from management after writing stories unfavorable to a politician or our company’s investors.
We have basic concerns about whether we will be able to do our jobs moving forward without interference.
We want to know: did a politician or someone tied to that politician lodge a complaint with Mr. Ferro over a story? If there was indeed a breach in the firewall that is supposed to exist between owners and the newsroom, how do we know that will not reoccur? Would you or Mr. Knight address the newsroom to answers these questions and others?
Chicago Sun-Times Newsroom and supporters
Get over there.
Any bets on how many BGA execs will be signing?’
Hat tip: Ahern.