We feel better. We’re not the only folks who have been rudely dissed by Linda Greenhouse, the longtime
op-ed columnist Supreme Court correspondent of the New York Times.
From Jim Romenesko’s widely read media blog, Poynter Online:
NYT’s Greenhouse demands that C-SPAN turn off its cameras
Columbia Journalism Review
The Times’ Linda Greenhouse became upset when she realized that C-SPAN planned to broadcast a panel discussion featuring Supreme Court reporters. “I told [the event organizer] she had a choice, either she could have me on the panel speaking candidly or she could have C-SPAN there,” Greenhouse tells Gal Beckerman. “I didn’t want to have to modulate my comments for a national audience.”
C-SPAN’s programming veep is unhappy: “All the participants were notified the night before, and no one objected. Then, five to ten minutes beforehand, we were told we couldn’t cover it. Having a five-person crew unable to work for a day was a major hit on us.”
Wow. To the commenters who have questioned our characterization of Greenhouse as a diva, please reconsider your views.
So why did Linda Greenhouse throw a hissy fit over possible C-SPAN coverage? We have some (quasi-informed) speculation.
Some thoughts and some links, plus the complete protest letter sent by C-SPAN, appear after the jump.
Now, it’s certainly true that Linda Greenhouse isn’t a fan of “meta-coverage,” i.e., coverage of her coverage of the Court. From an ATL commenter:
The whole reason Greenhouse was all pissy [at the ACS conference] and made that comment about Lat posting her ACS remarks on the web had to do with her speech at Willkie Farr. Lat, via a tipster, posted a summary of that speech not long afterwards. Greenhouse evidently complained about that to one of the partners at Willkie, resulting in a scolding lecture from that partner at the following month’s lunch.
Very interesting. But with respect to the AEJMC conference panel, we understand that she had more specific concerns. What we’re hearing is that Linda Greenhouse wanted to be as free as possible to criticize the Supreme Court’s recent turn to the right — without having to worry about such pesky things as, you know, “impartiality” (which we bloggers don’t have to worry about, thankfully).
And criticize Greenhouse did, after she had the cameras killed. We understand that Linda Greenhouse had some not-so-nice things to say about the latest SCOTUS Term as a participant on the panel.
During the question-and-answer session, someone asked about the so-called “Greenhouse effect” — LG’s ability to influence the Court through her coverage (due to the desire of some justices, such as Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, to win favorable press in the New York Times). In response to this question, apparently Greenhouse said something along these lines: “I WISH I had more influence on the Court, given some of the decisions from this Term!”
But look, this is just secondhand. We don’t have any specifics about her remarks, nor do we have a transcript. So we have a request for the readership.
We hear that even though La Greenhouse put the kibosh on the cameras, some audio recordings of the session were made. If you can hook us up with one, please email us. Thanks.
(The letter from C-SPAN officials appears below.)
Update: Linda Greenhouse issued a letter refuting the C-SPAN charges. See here.
Further Update: According to Jack Shafer of Slate, the exact Greenhouse quote was: “”If there is such a thing as the Greenhouse Effect, I suppose it wasn’t working this Term.”
NYT’s Greenhouse demands that C-SPAN turn off its cameras [Poynter Online - Jim Romenesko]
The Greenhouse Effect: Hurricane Linda blows C-SPAN cameras away [Columbia Journalism Review]
C-SPAN Crews Barred from AEJMC Discussion [AEJMC Membership Forum]
Earlier: Linda Greenhouse: A Drama Queen in Capri Pants?
Prior ATL coverage of Linda Greenhouse