Stephen Colbert and Trolls Greet the Washington Post's New Motto

When I asked about Washington Post executive editor Marty Baron about the papers’s new editorial credo, “Democracy Dies In Darkness,” he replied with a press release.


This is something we've said internally for a long time in speaking about our mission. We thought it would be a good, concise value statement that conveys who we are to the many millions of readers who have come to us for the first time over the last year. We started with our newest readers on Snapchat, and plan to roll it out on our other platforms in the coming weeks.

The reaction to the new motto has been mixed to positive. ProPublica, the investigative new site, called it "awesome.” Vanity Fair sees a stroke of “pure branding genius.” Media critic Jack Shafer called the phrase “something a sincere goofball would say in a Preston Sturges movie.”

Late Show host Stephen Colbert said the slogan showed that the Post “has entered its Goth phase.” The newspaper, he added, had rejected the slogan, “We took down Nixon. Who wants next?” When the laughs subsided, Colbert lauded the paper for declaring its intention to hold President Trump accountable.

Slate countered with "15 Metal Albums Whose Titles Are Less Dark Than the Washington Post's New Motto."

 Intercept columnist Glenn Greenwald was both positive and negative. First, he heralded the paper’s “great new slogan.”

Then, in his next tweet, he mocked it

Libertarian Benjamin Bell was wholly negative.

Texas radio host Jonathan Riley saw an anti-Trump message.

Barb, a Trump voter in Virginia, detected a communist conspiracy.

In the Post  newsroom, columnist Alexandra Petri offered a more sardonic alternative.

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