Bangkok Post statement

Bangkok Post statement

The editor of the Bangkok Post has issued a statement in reply to an article published by the Columbia Journalism Review.

Statement by the Bangkok Post

On April 15, 2015, the Columbia Journalism Review (CJR) published an article titled "Pork, bullets and the dismal state of Thai journalism" by Justin Heifetz.

This story is riddled with flaws and is simply malicious innuendo. We have taken the time to provide the facts on many paragraphs of this so-called story.

It is quite clear that there is no factual basis to many of the claims made by the writer and that he is simply taking the opportunity to malign the Bangkok Post while using the CJR as his hapless soapbox. To make an analogy - if a cadet reporter joined the Wall Street Journal or The New York Times, left after six months on the job without any proper notice, and then submitted a libelous article about his trials and tribulations, would the CJR be so quick to publish without verifying any of the allegations made in the article?

What amazes us is that the editors of the CJR did not make any effort to contact us to verify this story. To obtain comment, they instead relied solely on the writer, who was going to write a story against this newspaper.

If this is the standard to which the CJR adheres, then I believe the CJR's Board of Overseers needs to be made aware of the dismal state of how the CJR operates. The CJR should retract this story and issue an official apology to the Bangkok Post, Mr Heifetz’s former colleagues at the newspaper and indeed, to the Thai media, many of whom do in fact take considerable risk in the performance of their professional duties.

Failing that the CJR should publish our response unedited and not as suggested by the CJR: "We'd like to get to the bottom of this, and if a correction or clarification is needed, we're glad to get Justin to write one. Please let me know about the fact issues in writing as soon as you can."

Pichai Chuensuksawadi
Editor, The Bangkok Post

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