Porn photos posted late at night doomed the L.A. Times wikitorial, the New York Times reports Tuesday. Deputy editorial page editor Michael Newman suggests the hardcore stuff came in after a pointer was placed on Slashdot.org.
"Slashdot has a tech-savvy audience that, to be kind, is mischievous and to be not so kind, is malicious," Mr. Newman said. "We were taking stuff down as soon as it went up and staving them off. Finally we had to go to bed. Someone called the newsroom a little bit before 4 a.m. and said there's something bad on your Web site, and so we just took the whole site down."
Here's what they're saying at Slashdot. Despite the pranking, editorial page editor Andrés Martinez told the NYT: "I was heartened by how seriously people took it. I was really impressed by the level of high-minded participation. It's not a total shock it ended up this way. Now we will evaluate what this means." Blog reactions: Jeff Jarvis, Chris Anderson at The Long Tail, Corante.
* Give Newman credit: The L.A. Times story in Tuesday's paper says Newman proposed the wiki approach. Editors expressed interest in trying again, but the pool of contributors might be more tightly controlled or their posts screened. The story by media reporter James Rainey clarifies that "nearly 1,000 users" registered to participate in the wiki — while the editor's note shutting it down still claims that "thousands of people... logged on in the right spirit."