The New York Times used its influence to kill a story: that one of its reporters was kidnapped. It gained the agreement of countless other outlets to suppress the news. Wikipedia agreed to squelch attempts to break the story there, too. The rationale was that doing so would keep his ransom low and help ensure his safety. David Rohde ultimately escaped his Taliban captors.
This one’s a toughie.
On one hand, it’s an uplifting story about how dissimilar organizations came together to limit the risk to an endangered reporter. Common sense suggests the right thing was done.
On the other hand, the NYT has no qualms reporting other kidnappings–only when its own financial self-interest is at stake does it take refuge in security-before-truth pieties. What other undisputed truths do the media collectively agree not to report? What other favors might Jimmy Wales be enticed to perform?
Actually, don’t answer that last one.