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Why The New York Times Should Sue Anonymous Commenters

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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I was talking to a reporter from a UK newspaper the other day, trying to explain to him the operation, begun some years ago, to discredit the American newspaper industry. I'm not sure if anyone outside the U.S. understands what an astoundingly near-complete assassination has been done upon our papers. The worst part is, no one knows whose plan this was. We can see, at least, who benefits from it: the people who are reported upon. And we can see the talking points—take a look at the comments on these two New York Observer items, on the Times standards editor's latest memos about how the paper's staffers should not give the appearance of political impropriety from donations, bumper stickers or even Facebook. The commenters arrived, largely, from a link on the Drudge Report.

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