NYT won’t follow AP on ‘illegal immigrant’

The New York Times announced today it will continue to use the term “illegal immigrant” in its reporting, despite a recent change in the Associated Press Stylebook that prohibits it. The Times “will continue to allow the phrase to be used for ‘someone who enters, lives in or works in the United States without proper legal authorization.’ But it encourages reporters and editors to ‘consider alternatives when appropriate to explain the specific circumstances of the person in question, or to focus on actions.'” The announcement came after a group of protestors demonstrated at NYT headquarters and delivered some 70,000 signatures asking the Times to stop using the phrase. “Advocates on one side of this political debate have called on news organizations to use only the terms they prefer,” said Philip B. Corbett, associate managing editor for standards. “But we have to make those decisions for journalistic reasons alone, based on what we think best informs our readers on this important topic.” He added: “It’s not our job to take sides.” Once again the Times shows why it is America’s top newspaper.

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