Only two months after he got the gig, the new New York Times tech editor is already the old New York Times editor.
On January 16, the Times replaced tech editor Damon Darlin with assistant managing editor Glenn Kramon. The plan was that Kramon would move from New York to San Francisco to take the job.
We’ve just learned that Kramon is no longer in that role. He’s been replaced by Suzanne Spector, who will do the job from New York for now.
Why the sudden change?
According to an internal memo from Dean Murphy, Times editorial bosses decided he is “needed for an assignment in the newsroom in New York.”
Murphy writes, “Glenn’s short tenure as tech editor has been put to great use helping reporters develop enterprise and think ambitiously about their beats, and he will continue to work with Suzanne and the tech reporters over the next few weeks.”
A source who tracks the Times newsroom closely tells us that Kramon was always an odd choice for tech editor.
This source says Kramon’s specialty in the newsroom has been coming up with ideas for series that can win Pulitzers. For example, he helped reporter Matt Richtel develop his prize-winning series on the perils of distracted driving.
Pulitzer wins are the metric Times management cares about most, so it seemed odd that it would ship someone with Kramon’s skill set out West.
Here’s the internal memo, provided to us by a Times spokesperson.
It makes Spector sound pretty fierce! Apparently, she’s always “whooping” and “elbowing” and “rapid firing.”
BizDay’s New Tech Editor: Suzanne Spector
Suzanne Spector has been named the new technology editor. She succeeds Glenn Kramon, who Jill, Dean and Janet have decided is needed for an assignment in the newsroom in New York. Read more in this note from Dean Murphy.
She whoops with excitement and can even become airborne when a Tech story gets fronted. She unapologetically elbows her way to the front of the scrum when we gather to pick stories for the dress page. When a great idea for a story is floated, she rapid fires the reasons the assignment should go to a Tech reporter. And when news breaks, there is no fiercer competitor. In nearly three years as a deputy technology editor, Suzanne Spector has proved that a former criminal defence lawyer (the slick white collar variety of crimes, we should note) can master the world of metadata, boot sequences and enterprise computing and become a digital journalistic force to reckon with.
I am pleased to announce that Suzanne will now take that virtual verve up another notch as technology editor. Suzanne succeeds Glenn Kramon, who Jill, Dean and Janet have decided is needed for an assignment in the newsroom in New York.
Glenn’s short tenure as tech editor has been put to great use helping reporters develop enterprise and think ambitiously about their beats, and he will continue to work with Suzanne and the tech reporters over the next few weeks. Vindu Goel, a former deputy tech editor with deep experience in Silicon Valley, will also help with editing during the transition as Suzanne builds her new team.
Suzanne will begin her job, based in New York, with a running start. Both Glenn and Damon Darlin, until recently the tech editor, describe her as a “take-charge” colleague who has been the driving force behind much of our coverage. “She has more than earned this great job,” Glenn says. “Her enthusiasm for the subject, and the technology staff’s fondness and respect for her, persuade me that she will build on what Damon Darlin, Kevin McKenna and other predecessors have pioneered.”
BizDay knows Suzanne as a late-adopter (albeit fully converted) geek, but she has conquered other subjects since joining The Times after stints teaching legal writing at Hofstra Law School and editing at the National Law Journal and the New York Law Journal. She has been a backfielder and Web editor for National, deputy education editor (as well as acting education editor for the better part of a year), and an editor for the regional weeklies.
“She’s already been running the show for the past two years,” Damon says.