NPR's education team sent out a curious tweet Wednesday that prompted an online backlash.
"I reach out to diverse sources on deadline," the tweet from @npr_ed said. "Only the white guys get back to me."
I reach out to diverse sources on deadline. Only the white guys get back to me :(— NPR's Education Team (@NPR's Education Team)1404316639.0
The tweet seemed uncharacteristic for NPR, an outlet that fired analyst Juan Williams after he made remarks about feeling "nervous" if he sees people dressed in "Muslim garb" on an airplane.
It took a few days for the @npr_ed tweet to gain widespread notice, but when it did, critics sunk their teeth into it.
@npr_ed It sounds like you aren't very good at an important part of your job. I'd expect this from Fox News, but not NPR.— Galen (@Galen)1404698288.0
The person responsible for the tweet soon revealed herself to be NPR blogger Anya Kamenetz.
Kamenetz said she had mistakenly sent the tweet from the NPR education account instead of her own and that she regretted it.
@latinorebels @npr_ed hi. I regret it a lot. Was sharing momentary frustration at daily struggle to find diverse sources (1)— Anya Kamenetz (@Anya Kamenetz)1404730828.0
@latinorebels @npr_ed often majority voices are quicker to respond / self promote. (2)— Anya Kamenetz (@Anya Kamenetz)1404730868.0
But the critics wouldn't let up, prompting a little bit of a backlash against the backlash.
@latinorebels, What do you want, a pound of flesh? @anya1anya - ur a good example of what to do in case of such a gaffe. Well done. @npr_ed— Laura Drexler (@Laura Drexler)1404737935.0
Some of the Twitter users gave Kamenetz commands masquerading as advice.
@npr_ed try harder to get feedback from diverse sources. Don't just reach out to sources, go out & GET the story. @latinorebels— DelExilio (@DelExilio)1404696803.0
The whole thing might seem a little overblown to some, all things considered.
First, the initial tweet expressed a desire to hear from minority sources (in addition to the offending phrasing).
Second, Kamenetz was engaged and apologetic throughout the process, yet many continued to harangue her.
And finally, the whole thing blew up despite the two clarifying tweets Kamenetz immediately sent from the NPR education account after the first one, all the way back on Wednesday.
That was not the best wording. But I'm trying to get at a serious issue.— NPR's Education Team (@NPR's Education Team)1404318898.0
If you'd like to continue the discussion I'm at @anya1anya— NPR's Education Team (@NPR's Education Team)1404318922.0
Kerfuffle or no, Kamenetz seemed to be taking the whole thing in stride.
@sky_bluesky believe me, i wish I had kept it to myself. But the silver lining is, I have met many more diverse sources.— Anya Kamenetz (@Anya Kamenetz)1404745132.0
Follow Zach Noble (@thezachnoble) on Twitter