Tina Brown 'Glad' She's Not 'Newsweek' Editor Amid Bitcoin Controversy

10:56 AM PST 03/07/2014 by Erik Hayden
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Tina Brown

UPDATED: The venerable weekly officially revived itself in print on Friday with a cover story that's being called into question.

On Friday, after more than a year out of print, a new incarnation of Newsweek revived itself as an upscale small-circulation print weekly with a buzzy and controversial cover story that claimed to unveil the founder of bitcoin.

The story created a firestorm online after the named man, Dorian S. Nakamoto, denied to both the magazine and in a subsequent interview with The Associated Press that he was Satoshi Nakamoto, creator of the online currency.

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While Newsweek has continued to stand by the story, Tina Brown, the magazine's former editor, has now weighed in with brief comments about the controversial cover. "All I can think of is: I'm so glad I'm not the editor of Newsweek," she said during a segment on Bloomberg TV when queried about the story.

The writer of the Newsweek story, Leah McGrath Goodman, was also interviewed in a contentious segment on the channel. "I have to say that I find [Tina's] comments not to be very friendly to Newsweek and I have a problem with the way she spoke about it. There's a backstory to that and she knows there is one," she said, referring to Brown's previous record with the publication under different ownership. 

Brown, who became editor of Newsweek in fall of 2010 after stereo magnate Sidney Harmon purchased the mag and then merged it with news website The Daily Beast, reiterated a dim tone about the future of print. "It's very hard. I mean, the ship sailed; it really is a hard thing to to bring it back [in print]," she said, noting that she does see hope for a "small" print component.

Brown announced plans to leave The Daily Beast in September 2013 to start a live journalism conference business, less than a month after the venerable newsweekly was sold to small company IBT Media, which relaunched the title.

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