Will Latest Ethics Lapse Finally Cost David Pogue His NYT Gig?

New York Times tech columnist David Pogue

David Pogue is in hot water again with The New York Times ethics policy.

The tech journalist is participating in a video seminar called “Pitch me, Baby,” in which people pay $159 to hear him discuss pitches.

While the CEO of Ragan Communications, the company putting on the seminar, refused to say if Pogue was being paid, even the journalist’s appearance could violate the Times’ ethics policy (a line he’s crossed before.)

So what will happen? Not much, likely.

A Times PR spokeswoman told Forbes.com’s Jeff Bercovici, “David’s editors are discussing this outside engagement with him. As a freelancer with a number of activities beyond the Times, David has some leeway in work he does on his own time, but he is expected to consult with his editors to ensure that none of that work poses a conflict with his assignments for the Times.”

Which, OK fine, but that policy hasn’t been applied uniformly. Pogue gets away with more than the average freelancer… because he’s much more than the average freelancer. The Times needs him just as much (probably more) than he needs them, so he’ll get perhaps a slap on the wrist and nothing more.

In this case, 1.3 million Twitter followers > $159 ethics violation. Again.

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