Thursday, June 02, 2005

Deep th... thoughts, I mean thoughts

I'm slowly catching up on the news of the past few days, so I'm getting to the "Deep Throat" news a little late. Over at Pub of Knowledge, Susannah has a good take on the story, from the perspective of a fellow history-journalism-politics geek. It's good to know I'm not the only person in my age bracket who cares about this stuff.

So here's my thought: If you're the Washington Post and you've been sitting on this story for years, respecting the confidentiality of probably the most famous secret informant of all time, and then watch Vanity Fair snatch away your rightful glory, how irritated are you?

Poor Bob Woodward has been ready to spill the beans for decades, but diligently kept his promise not to reveal his source until "Deep Throat" passed away. Now John D. O'Connor is getting the byline and lapping up the publicity. Bob tries to remind everyone that "Deep Throat" was his deal in today's Post, though he's very professional about it.

Meanwhile, Howard Kurtz, also of the Post, laments his paper being scooped on its own story and quotes Woodward as being completely surprised. ("I didn't know he was gearing up to go public," he said.)

In the end, Woodward and the Post were trapped by their own word. That has to be a bitter pill to swallow.