Ryerson Review of Journalism graphic

It’s always nice to get a little press—but not if it means one of our staff is singled out for groundless abuse.

The Review’s blog this year has taken on controversial issues. Under the skillful handling of blog editors Fatima Syed and Davide Mastracci, we’ve critiqued coverage of tragedies in Beirut and Paris, questioned journalists’ varied accounts of #WelcomeRefugees and supported Vice when it was persecuted by the RCMP. And that’s just last month.

There’s plenty of grist for the mill. Alas, it was Mastracci’s online feature story that attracted the ire of Toronto Sun columnist Lorrie Goldstein:

Goldstein’s assertion in this tweet is wrong. The GIF that Batra, Fatah and Hassan appear in was intended to illustrate our point that many Canadian columnists, though not all, are middle-aged white men. The story is online here.

Mastracci’s fellow blog editor, Syed, neither wrote nor edited this story. Online feature stories are handled differently from blog posts.

But Goldstein’s colleague Tarek Fatah launched a personal attack against Syed in response to Goldstein’s tweet:

Fatah’s attempt to bully her by calling her “fake”—something we still don’t understand—is nonsensical. Doing so while in a position of authority as a columnist is deplorable.

The irony of Fatah’s tweet is that by singling out one of the visibly non-white people on the masthead, he is demonstrating the importance of the subjects we write about. If this incident has taught us anything, it’s that we need to keep writing.


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