BuzzFeed staffers have been given the OK to tweet that Donald Trump is a liar and a racist.
In a memo posted on Twitter, editor-in-chief Ben Smith told staff “It is, for instance, entirely fair to call [Trump] a mendacious racist, as the politics team and others here have reported clearly and aggressively: He’s out there saying things that are false, and running an overtly anti-Muslim campaign.”
“BuzzFeed News’s reporting is rooted in facts, not opinion; these are facts,” Smith said.
Smith warned that it’s not fair to say Trump’s “views are those of all Republicans or conservatives,” but that “you aren’t going to get in trouble for” name calling Trump on Twitter.
“There’s nothing partisan about accurately describing Donald Trump,” Smith ended his memo.
— Ben Smith (@BuzzFeedBen) December 9, 2015
Meanwhile, the Huffington Post announced over the weekend it’s changing its practice on covering Trump. Earlier this year, the Huffington Post said it would cover him and his candidacy in the entertainment sections but in a Dec. 7 “note on Trump,” Arianna Huffington wrote that after Trump’s call to ban all Muslims from entering the United States, his campaign has become ” ugly and dangerous force in American politics.”
“We will no longer be covering his campaign in Entertainment,” Huffington wrote. “But that’s not to say we’ll be treating it as if it were a normal campaign.”
Huffington said that despite Trump’s “ugly comments from the beginning” about Mexicans, the site “refused to go along with the idea…that Trump’s candidacy was actually a serious and good faith effort to present ideas on how best to govern the country.”
“We continue to believe this to be true — and will continue to let it guide our coverage — but much has changed,” she wrote, adding:
“At first, this over-the-top xenophobia, though disgusting, played as the sour shtick of a washed-up insult comic. Now that Trump, aided by the media, has doubled down on the cruelty and know-nothingness that defined his campaign’s early days, the ‘can you believe he said that?’ novelty has curdled and congealed into something repellent and threatening — laying bare a disturbing aspect of American politics.”
Moving forward, Huffington promised the Huffington Post would “constantly remind the public of what he stands for” including “his ongoing lies about Muslims in New Jersey celebrating 9/11,” “his status as birther-in-chief,” “his misogyny,” “his xenophobia and scapegoatimg of immigrants,” and “his unmistakable passion for bullying.”
UPDATED: 12/9/2015 3:09 PM EST With Huffington’s comments