Former Wall Street Journal reporter Jay Solomon writes for Columbia Journalism Review about how hacked emails and a yacht ended his career.
Solomon writes, “But the hack of Azima’s data set off a chain of events that eventually cost me my job as the Journal’s chief foreign affairs correspondent last June. It was a position I held for nearly a decade, and loved. I’d worked for the Journal’s parent company, Dow Jones, almost since graduating college, including overseas postings in Jakarta, South Korea, and India.
“The point of writing this story isn’t to absolve myself of any journalistic wrongdoing or criticize my former employer. I remain a huge fan of the Journal and the reporters there. Some of my writing partners and editors were trying to help me survive these attacks.
“Rather, having now thought about this for months, I think I understand that I made serious mistakes in managing my source relationship with Azima during my pursuit of the Iran story. I also blundered my initial conversations with the Journal, when the paper first started to grill me about my relationship with the businessman. I was scared and defensive, and lost my job as a result. The paper, from my perspective, was never straightforward in explaining who was targeting me, nor did it seem to want to help me defend myself. My hope is that walking through these errors will help other journalists avoid making the same mistakes.”
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