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14 Nov, 2020 20:19

Vox co-founder Yglesias becomes latest prominent journalist to flee media job for opportunity to report & speak independently

Vox co-founder Yglesias becomes latest prominent journalist to flee media job for opportunity to report & speak independently

The mainstream media's problems with diversity of thought and reporting on off-limits subjects seem to have prompted yet another journalist to flee for a chance to speak freely – this time it's Vox co-founder Matthew Yglesias.

"Parting is always bittersweet, and I'll miss so many colleagues so very much, but I'm looking forward to really telling everyone what's on my mind to an even greater extent than I do now," Yglesias told his 486,000 Twitter followers on Friday.

Yglesias, a former blogger, said he will reclaim his "independent voice" with a new blog hosted by Substack. That means he will be following in the footsteps of Glenn Greenwald, who left the Intercept late last month after editors there spiked an article that alleged wrongdoing by Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden; and Andrew Sullivan, who said he was pushed out of his job as a columnist at New York Magazine last July because his management and co-workers wouldn't tolerate disagreement on many issues.

Also in July, New York Times opinion writer Bari Weiss resigned after failing to comply with the consensus thinking of "an enlightened few."

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New York Magazine is owned by Vox. Sullivan said mainstream media outlets have become so ideologically intolerant that writers who are "not actively committed" to so-called "critical theory" in questions of race, gender, and other identity issues are seen as "actively, physically harming co-workers merely by existing in the same virtual space."

To at least some degree, Yglesias experienced some of the same at Vox, which he co-founded in 2014. For instance, he signed a group letter, published in July in Harper's magazine, that spoke out against illiberal cancel culture and ideological conformity. Co-worker Emily VanDerWerff responded by saying she was "deeply saddened" to see that Yglesias signed the letter, and that it made her feel "less safe" as a trans woman at Vox.

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The Intercept, which Greenwald co-founded in 2013 after breaking the Edward Snowden NSA whistleblower story, is billed as offering "fearless, adversarial journalism that holds the powerful accountable." But Greenwald said he and other journalists, such as former Rolling Stone writer Matt Taibbi, are publishing their work at Substack because of the "increasingly repressive climate that is engulfing national mainstream media outlets across the country."

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