There's a big flap in the blogosphere over the request by the New York Times to keep news of the kidnapping of one of their reporters in Afghanistan under wraps (it's not the first time). As the world recently learned in the major outlets, New York Times reporter Stephen Farrell was kidnapped along with his interpreter as they surveyed the scene of the recent NATO bombing of the Taliban-hijacked fuel tankers outside of Kabul.
Apparently Arthur Ochs Sulzberger, Jr. (one must hold the publisher ultimately accountable) asked the international press and wire services to withhold news of the kidnapping. This isn't the first time. They also did the same with another one of their journos, David Rohde, who was kidnapped in November, 2008. Rohde, who was held seven months, escaped by scaling a wall in Waziristan. During his captivity, The Times also worked with Wikipedia to suppress all news regarding his kidnapping, hence wikialytizing* history:
"From the early days of this ordeal, the prevailing view among David's family, experts in kidnapping cases, officials of several governments and others we consulted was that going public could increase the danger to David and the other hostages. The kidnappers initially said as much. " said Bill Keller, Times' executive editor. "We decided to respect that advice, as we have in other kidnapping cases, and a number of other news organizations that learned of David’s plight have done the same. We are enormously grateful for their support."
Without doubt, the same procedure was used in Farrell's case. However, this time the news of the kidnapping reached blogs, including a well-known one, The Long War Journal. Bill Roggio, Managing Editor, made the decision to report only that Farrell had been kidnapped.
Roggio, by no means a lightweight when it comes to journalism or boots-on-the-ground insight, did not disclose details about any negotiation or rescue efforts. Only that this event happened. His decision to run it brought forth accusations by bloggers of endangering both Farrell and the interpreter, as well as moral ineptitude.