NY Times to Review Columnist David Brooks’ Ties to Outside Project Funded by Facebook

The paper says it’s considering “what disclosures, if any, should be added” to his future columns

Last Updated: March 4, 2021 @ 9:42 AM

The New York Times is investigating columnist David Brooks’ ties to an outside group after reports that his second job is funded by Facebook and Jeff Bezos’ father, but his readers certainly don’t know that.

“We’re in the process of reviewing David’s relationship with the Weave Project and the Aspen Institute, and what disclosures, if any, should be added to David’s columns going forward,” a Times spokesperson told TheWrap Thursday.

On Wednesday, BuzzFeed News reported that Brooks is earning a second salary from the Aspen Institute, which is a “project funded by Facebook and other large donors.” Brooks has not yet disclosed as much in his columns. He founded and leads the institute’s Weave project.

As BuzzFeed News noted, in 2019, Brooks first discussed in his column the idea of  “Weavers,” people who are “building community and weaving the social fabric.”

In that piece, “A Nation of Weavers,” he did write, “My something extra was starting something nine months ago at the Aspen Institute called Weave: The Social Fabric Project. The first core idea was that social isolation is the problem underlying a lot of our other problems.”

He did not, however, disclose his salary or any money given by Facebook for the project.