Why David Simon felt compelled to comment on story about TV reporter Andrea McCarren

The Washington Post

The Washington Post's new comment system might not allow "that's what she said" jokes, but "The Wire" and "Treme" creator David Simon managed to squeak through recently, commenting under the name "AudacityofDespair." (It's a raging drag to try to find the comment, but it's there.)

Simon was spurred to enter the fray, Maura Judkis writes, after reading a recent Paul Farhi article about TV reporter Andrea McCarren, whose concern about a story in her kids' high school newspaper prompted the school's principal to "recall" part of the newspaper's run.

Simon tells Judkis (with whom I used to work) about his experience of raising a ruckus when he was at the very same high school's newspaper in the mid- to late-'70s: "We sent a reporter out and said, ‘Go buy drugs, see how long it takes you. It can’t be anyone you’ve bought drugs from in the past.’ ... We gave him some money. He came back in 15 minutes." Simon bypassed the newspaper adviser and published the story, which caused an uproar.

When asked about McCarren, Simon said she should "reflect" on the consequences of her complaint.

Earlier: ""Instead of practicing watchdog journalism, Simon is in the business of watchdog fiction." (The Paley Center for Media)
(Much) earlier: Write about David Simon and you’ll probably hear from him (Poynter)

  • Andrew Beaujon

    Andrew Beaujon reported on the media for Poynter from 2012 to 2015. He was previously arts editor at TBD.com and managing editor of Washington City Paper. He's the author of the 2006 book "Body Piercing Saved My Life," about Christian rock and evangelical Christian culture.


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