Saturday, October 31, 2009

AG spokesman put on leave for taping reporter

Attorney General Jerry Brown has put on leave spokesman Scott Gerber, who taped a conversation he and other members of the AG's office had with Chron reporter Carla Marinucci without her consent, a violation of the state's wiretapping law, the Chron reported.

The recording came to light when Gerber complained to Marinucci's editors that she did not accurately report the remarks of one of the people in the conversation, Jim Humes, chief deputy attorney general.

To make his point, Gerber e-mailed them a transcript of the interview.

The Chron said it briefly took the story off of the Web site to get more comments from Gerber.

The incident comes at a time when Brown's office is investigating whether two conservative journalists violated the same law when the posed as a prostitute and pimp, and recorded ACORN employees at two California offices.


Anonymous said...

This was certainly a bonehead move on the part of Gerber, but I hope it doesn't cost him his job.

It's important for all of us on both sides of this business to remember we must ask or at least let the person on the line know very clearly that we are taping.

"I'm taping this okay?" "May I tape your comments for air?" "I'd like to do a taped phone interview with you." Any of those quick at the start comments will clear you of the wiretaping law.

Anonymous said...

You gotta love the moxie of the Chronicle. First no one bothers asking whether their reporters tape interviews held over the phone, and then they expect us to forget how the pentagon recorded a Chronicle interview with Paul Wolfowitz (with consent) and the Chronicle then lied about what he said, forcing an embarrassing retraction.

Anonymous said...

Everyone who is ever interviewed by the Chronicle should have a tape recorder running given that paper's history of shotty, misinformed stories.