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 A difficult story

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Number of posts : 142
Age : 37
Registration date : 2007-06-13

PostSubject: A difficult story   Mon Oct 29, 2007 5:15 pm

Quote :
Two years ago, Eichenwald wrote a sensational front-page story in the New York Times about Justin Berry, a teenage pornography star who ran an enormously lucrative business from his room while his mother thought he was doing homework. The article resulted in congressional hearings, arrests, book-and-movie interest, and an Oprah episode. Eichenwald followed that first story with disturbing reports about illegal child-modeling Websites and self-help chat rooms where child molesters perfect their strategies. The Berry piece was impressive in its vividness. Law-enforcement agencies seized upon it as the definitive word about a sordid, teeming underworld, and parents inclined to worry about the dangers of the Internet were given reason to worry much more.


Now Eichenwald has been ensnared by his own campaign. His reporting methods are under intense scrutiny, and he’s been pilloried by other journalists, by pro-sex activists, and by people whom his investigations helped to put in jail.

As the controversy has grown, Eichenwald has bunkered himself in his Dallas home. He has family members answer his doorbell. As our talk began, he closed the doors of his home office, which is tightly shuttered against a beautiful morning, though there is no one in the house but the two of us and the family’s three-legged dog, Maggie.

Read the NY Guides story

On the front page of Debbie Nathan's blog, one of Eichenwald's critics:
Quote :
To sum up: I did an op-ed for Salon last year, wondering how Eichenwald had managed to write a story implying he’d looked at child porn on the web, when no one — not even journalists — are allowed to examine such material for research purposes. My point was not to attack Eichenwald, but to say that journalists need to look. We need to know what the real problems are with child porn, versus what is simply hype and government misinformation. Who in the media could disagree?

But in response, Eichenwald threatened to sue me for libel, and he successfully pressured Salon to remove my piece from its site. His attacks on me were vicious. I was a “maggot,” he said, “a kook.” He wrote me that if I ever said anything about him again that he deemed wrong, he would financially “wipe me off the face of the earth.” I’m a freelancer who is hardly wealthy, and the attacks were grave threats to my reputation and livelihood. What unethical (and possibly illegal) secrets did this man have in his closet to call out such crazy ire?

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