Anchor ads are not supported on this page.

4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Summer Stephan's fake NYT news experience

New D.A.'s New York Times advertorial venue hit by critics

From Stephan puff piece published in Women in the World, finally acknowledged  to be part of New York Times
From Stephan puff piece published in Women in the World, finally acknowledged to be part of New York Times

Fresh from her controversial appointment by the board of supervisors, San Diego's soon-to-be District Attorney Summer Stephans took to the New York Times this month in the midst of a victory round politically orchestrated to enhance the incoming D.A.'s already substantial electoral chances come next year.

Now comes word via the Columbia Journalism Review that Stephan's interview in the Times was not real news.

"Tireless San Diego prosecutor draws comparisons to Olivia Benson, ‘Law & Order’ character," blared a June 22 headline.

The story, appearing in an online section of the paper labeled "Women in the World, in association with the New York Times," begins, "She is not from New York and she does not wear pantsuits, but she is as fierce, passionate and committed to her job as Olivia Benson, the tireless detective on NBC’s Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. Her name is Summer Stephan and she is the chief deputy district attorney in San Diego."

According to the piece, "San Diego is one of the top 13 cities in the U.S. where sex trafficking and child prostitution is a thriving industry of about $810 million per year. In San Diego alone, it amounts to the second-largest criminal enterprise, even outpacing gun trafficking."

Sponsored
Sponsored

But Stephan is on the case, per the story.

"Prior to Stephan’s intervention, the law put the blame on victims at the age of 18, and those people were often put in prison. Stephan changed that paradigm,"

According to the piece, "Her reputation among victims and survivors grew and eventually she started being referred to as a 'modern day abolitionist.'"

The coverage caught the eye of The Voice of San Diego, a local online news and opinion outlet, that linked to the story, noting, "The New York Times has a glowing write-up of Summer Stephan’s work as deputy district attorney investigating and prosecuting sex trafficking."

Now comes word via the Columbia Journalism Review that Stephan's interview in the Times was not real news, but another manifestation of the newspaper's desperation to buoy its bottom line.

"In the digital age, The New York Times treads an increasingly slippery path between news and advertising," CJR headlined its June 28 report, which went on to describe how in late 2014 the Times made an investment in Women in the World Media, run by ex-Vanity Fair and New Yorker editor Tina Brown, which in addition to a website"hosts a high-profile annual summit."

"The deal gave Brown’s website a broader platform, putting it under the auspices of the Times, though she retained editorial control. (That provision would later prompt questions from Times readers and lead to a January column by the paper’s public editor highlighting the potential for confusion over whether Brown’s site carried Times editorial content.)"

"A few months later, in a quarterly filing, the Times said it was investing $2.3 million for a 30 percent stake in Brown’s company. As a result, the joint venture with Brown became a subsidiary of The New York Times.

“([Times Chief executive officer Mark Thompson], in an interview, initially disputed that Women in the World was a Times subsidiary, but later clarified that the paper’s interest was non-controlling because the Times owns less than 50 percent of Women in the World Media.) "

Adds the report, "None of the articles in the section disclose the interest of the Times in the summit. However, a full-page Toyota ad, at the back of the section, mentions, in small print and at the bottom of the page, that the summit is “In Association with The New York Times.”

Times editor Dean Baquet told CJR that the event’s connection to the paper “should have been made clear. This is new territory for us."

The paper’s senior editor in charge of the special sections, Trish Hall, promised in the future to "say somewhere in the section that The New York Times owns a stake in Women in the World.” Hall was quoted as saying that the section represented “journalism we want to do, but [that] we don’t do without advertisers.”

The June interview with San Diego’s Stephan appeared under the byline of Zainab Salbi, identified as "an editor at large for Women in the World, reporting on the intersection of Middle Eastern and Western cultures." The material is copyright, according to a small notice below the story, by Women in the World Media, LLC.

San Diego political insiders are looking for Stephan, who was appointed by the board of supervisors June 20 to fill the seat created by the resignation of incumbent Bonnie Dumanis following months of closed-door political plotting, to easily outspend any electoral rivals who might materialize to campaign against her.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Five of us in a one-bedroom on 47th Street

Cars run fast from the light at the 805 to the light on Logan Ave.
From Stephan puff piece published in Women in the World, finally acknowledged  to be part of New York Times
From Stephan puff piece published in Women in the World, finally acknowledged to be part of New York Times

Fresh from her controversial appointment by the board of supervisors, San Diego's soon-to-be District Attorney Summer Stephans took to the New York Times this month in the midst of a victory round politically orchestrated to enhance the incoming D.A.'s already substantial electoral chances come next year.

Now comes word via the Columbia Journalism Review that Stephan's interview in the Times was not real news.

"Tireless San Diego prosecutor draws comparisons to Olivia Benson, ‘Law & Order’ character," blared a June 22 headline.

The story, appearing in an online section of the paper labeled "Women in the World, in association with the New York Times," begins, "She is not from New York and she does not wear pantsuits, but she is as fierce, passionate and committed to her job as Olivia Benson, the tireless detective on NBC’s Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. Her name is Summer Stephan and she is the chief deputy district attorney in San Diego."

According to the piece, "San Diego is one of the top 13 cities in the U.S. where sex trafficking and child prostitution is a thriving industry of about $810 million per year. In San Diego alone, it amounts to the second-largest criminal enterprise, even outpacing gun trafficking."

Sponsored
Sponsored

But Stephan is on the case, per the story.

"Prior to Stephan’s intervention, the law put the blame on victims at the age of 18, and those people were often put in prison. Stephan changed that paradigm,"

According to the piece, "Her reputation among victims and survivors grew and eventually she started being referred to as a 'modern day abolitionist.'"

The coverage caught the eye of The Voice of San Diego, a local online news and opinion outlet, that linked to the story, noting, "The New York Times has a glowing write-up of Summer Stephan’s work as deputy district attorney investigating and prosecuting sex trafficking."

Now comes word via the Columbia Journalism Review that Stephan's interview in the Times was not real news, but another manifestation of the newspaper's desperation to buoy its bottom line.

"In the digital age, The New York Times treads an increasingly slippery path between news and advertising," CJR headlined its June 28 report, which went on to describe how in late 2014 the Times made an investment in Women in the World Media, run by ex-Vanity Fair and New Yorker editor Tina Brown, which in addition to a website"hosts a high-profile annual summit."

"The deal gave Brown’s website a broader platform, putting it under the auspices of the Times, though she retained editorial control. (That provision would later prompt questions from Times readers and lead to a January column by the paper’s public editor highlighting the potential for confusion over whether Brown’s site carried Times editorial content.)"

"A few months later, in a quarterly filing, the Times said it was investing $2.3 million for a 30 percent stake in Brown’s company. As a result, the joint venture with Brown became a subsidiary of The New York Times.

“([Times Chief executive officer Mark Thompson], in an interview, initially disputed that Women in the World was a Times subsidiary, but later clarified that the paper’s interest was non-controlling because the Times owns less than 50 percent of Women in the World Media.) "

Adds the report, "None of the articles in the section disclose the interest of the Times in the summit. However, a full-page Toyota ad, at the back of the section, mentions, in small print and at the bottom of the page, that the summit is “In Association with The New York Times.”

Times editor Dean Baquet told CJR that the event’s connection to the paper “should have been made clear. This is new territory for us."

The paper’s senior editor in charge of the special sections, Trish Hall, promised in the future to "say somewhere in the section that The New York Times owns a stake in Women in the World.” Hall was quoted as saying that the section represented “journalism we want to do, but [that] we don’t do without advertisers.”

The June interview with San Diego’s Stephan appeared under the byline of Zainab Salbi, identified as "an editor at large for Women in the World, reporting on the intersection of Middle Eastern and Western cultures." The material is copyright, according to a small notice below the story, by Women in the World Media, LLC.

San Diego political insiders are looking for Stephan, who was appointed by the board of supervisors June 20 to fill the seat created by the resignation of incumbent Bonnie Dumanis following months of closed-door political plotting, to easily outspend any electoral rivals who might materialize to campaign against her.

Comments
Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Tim Flannery, Pete “Pops” Escovedo, Roger Clyne, Orion Song, Jeff Berkley

Jazz, country, R&B, rock, and acoustic evenings in La Jolla, Little Italy, Ramona, and Solana Beach
Next Article

Tár is a waste of time

The only great classical music movie is Amadeus
Comments
Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories Fishing Report — What’s getting hooked from ship and shore From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town The Gonzo Report — Making the musical scene, or at least reporting from it Letters — Our inbox Movies@Home — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Theater — On stage in San Diego this week Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close

Anchor ads are not supported on this page.