Will the New York Times like their own plaintiff as much as they liked Ellen Pao?

The New York Times didn’t wait to hear the evidence before lauding as meritorious Ellen Pao‘s employment discrimination claim against the one-percenters at Kleiner Perkins. Now they’ve got their own plaintiff, Marjorie Walker (“Here’s why I’m suing the New York Times for discrimination” (Guardian)), alleging that they discriminate against “older, minority and female employees” in favor of “young, high-end and primarily white” workers.

One common thread is that the Times doesn’t have any difficulty in making up its mind about these lawsuits. Just as they were quickly sure that Ellen Pao was right, they’re confident that Marjorie Walker is dead wrong:

A spokeswoman for The Times called the suit “entirely without merit” and said “we intend to fight it vigorously in court.’’ — “Suit Accuses New York Times Executives of Bias”

What do readers think? Ellen Pao’s argument was that the Kleiner Perkins partners wanted to make themselves poorer by bringing in a less qualified person as a partner (my initial posting on the lawsuit where I wondered what their motivation could be). Marjorie Walker and her co-plaintiff Ernestine Grant argue that mid-level managers at the Times are favoring workers under 40 rather than workers over 60.


4 thoughts on “Will the New York Times like their own plaintiff as much as they liked Ellen Pao?

  1. “Times’s new management systematically purging my division (and others) of older employees, people of color and women whose family obligations are viewed as interfering with work.”

    Reading between the lines, the new management was bottom line oriented and demanded performance, so they got rid of all the deadwood who thought that working at the NY Times was a sinecure like having a job at the DMV.

    Owning a major daily was once a license to print money. The classified ads alone were a gold mine. So having a bunch of dead weight around was an affordable luxury. Those days are gone. Most dailies are out of business or cling to life on the backs of charitable benefactors. The NY Times remains a profitable business but only because they have implemented severe cuts.

  2. I think the NY Times is not going to have much trouble swatting this suit away. The women involved have the misfortune to work in the advertising sales division. This is unfortunate for them because it’s quite easy to measure the productivity of sales personnel – you just look at how much advertising they have sold. You would never lay off your top producers even if they are family oriented, have green skin and are 99 years old. In sales positions, money talks and BS walks. All of their claims about the NY Times wanting sales personnel who were young and looked like their customers, etc. is surely just a smokescreen for the fact that these two were just not effective in their jobs and this will be easy for the NY Times to prove.

  3. Is it so obvious the older sales reps aren’t producing? They probably have developed accounts and therefore generated more revenue than the people replacing them. It was probably cheaper to switch the accounts to a new, cheaper face but that’s a different issue. WaPo faced similar litigation from older black employees.

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