Emily Wilder, the journalist fired from the Associated Press for an undisclosed violation of the organization’s social media policy, says she was “canceled” and the organization caved into a “witch hunt” against her.
“There’s no question I was just canceled,” Wilder told SFGATE. “This is exactly the issue with the rhetoric around ‘cancel culture.’ To Republicans, cancel culture is usually seen as teens or young people online advocating that people be held accountable over accusations of racism or whatever it may be, but when it comes down to who actually has to deal with the lifelong ramifications of the selective enforcement of cancel culture — specifically over the issue of Israel and Palestine — it’s always the same side.”
In her interview, Wilder said she believes her termination was the results of a campaign by Stanford College Republicans to oust her, not any particular social post. She said that the AP did not identify which social media post of hers led to her ouster. She further added she’d been previously assured by an AP editor that social media posts and civic engagement from college wouldn’t affect her employment. After the Republican group at her alma matter resurfaced old posts and highlighted her participation in Jewish Voice for Peace and Students for Justice in Palestine this week, she was fired.
Wilder, who is Jewish, has frequently tweeted about the situation in the Middle East. Last Sunday, for instance, she tweeted: “‘objectivity’ feels fickle when the basic terms we use to report news implicitly stake a claim. using ‘israel’ but never ‘palestine,’ or ‘war’ but not ‘siege and occupation’ are political choices — yet media make those exact choices all the time without being flagged as biased.”
She declared it’s “really unfortunate the Associated Press is abdicating their responsibility to not only me, but to all journalists just because a group of college students wanted to engage in a witch hunt.”
Several notable journalists tweeted support for Wilder and criticized the Associated Press for her dismissal.
When reached for comment Friday, a representative for the AP told TheWrap, “While AP generally refrains from commenting on personnel matters, we can confirm Emily Wilder’s comments on Thursday that she was dismissed for violations of AP’s social media policy during her time at AP.”
The firing came just days after the AP’s Gaza bureau was decimated by Israeli forces.