Labor & Employment

Indicted journalist is out at Reuters. Were Boston Marathon tweets a factor?


A deputy social media editor at Reuters says he has lost his job after being federally indicted on charges he helped the hacking group Anonymous deface a former employer’s news website.

Matthew Keys said in a tweet and a Tumblr post that he plans to fight what he described as his firing Monday with the help of the union that represents Reuters journalists, the Newspaper Guild of New York. He also said a factor in his being let go by Reuters was tweets he had made about the recent Boston Marathon bombings, the Hollywood Reporter explains.

The Associated Press and Politico also have stories. Another Politico post, based on an interview with Keys, provides additional information.

According to Keys, his now-former employer objected to his Boston Marathon tweets both because they provided inaccurate information from police scanners and because he identified himself on his Twitter feed as a journalist for Reuters, even though Keys said is company policy for journalists to do so.

Suspended by Reuters after he was federally indicted in March over his alleged role in a conspiracy to help Anonymous hack into a news website related to a former employer, Keys said it is not clear whether the indictment was at issue in his firing.

“The company mentioned the suspension several times, but they did not mention the case nor did they mention the indictment. Still, one has to wonder if they are connected,” he wrote.

He is scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday in Sacramento in the criminal case.

Also see:

ABAJournal.com: “Journalist is federally charged with helping Anonymous hack into Tribune Co. website”

ABAJournal.com: “Did feds pick ‘low-hanging fruit’ by indicting editor in Anonymous hack attack on ex-employer site?”

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