Reporter Paul Gonzalez had an unpleasant surprise on Christmas. The reporter had turned in an article about last-minute holiday shopping. But when he opened the newspaper gay slurs popped out at him instead of his byline.
Paul Gonzalez’s article, “Customers flock downtown to wrap up last-minute Christmas shopping” should have had a simple byline — “Paul Gonzales, News-Press Writer.” That’s what it says on the online edition. But in the print edition of the newspaper gay slurs appear:
— Max Matthies (@Selfmademax) December 25, 2017
Gonzalez’s name had been changed to include the word “gay.” And he was no longer a News-Press Writer — instead he was the newspaper’s “faggoat.”
Donald Katich, the paper’s director of news operations, released a statement apologizing for the gaffe:
In Monday’s News-Press, one of our employees changed another employee’s byline to reflect an offensive slur. The News-Press has taken immediate and swift action with this employee; we do not tolerate any form of harassment in the workplace. We apologize to our readers.
The employee who made the change hasn’t been identified, however, according to the SF Gate, they have been fired.
The newspaper did take a couple days to apologize for the error, however. The apology only ran in the newspaper on Wednesday. The apology appeared at the bottom of page A3 — the same page as the original article — above an ad for a local plumber.
The News-Press is known as a right-leaning paper. Last year, it made headlines of its own for being the first newspaper in California to endorse Donald Trump for president. (Santa Barbara voted heavily for Clinton. She won the city 31,001 votes to 7,842.)
In 2015, the Santa Barbara News-Press offices were vandalized over a front-page article, “Illegals line up for drivers licenses.”
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