File this one under questionable employment decisions. The Hartford Courant, a local Connecticut newspaper fired its consumer affairs reporter after the individual exposed a pending investigation into Sleepy’s Mattress Company. Sleepy’s, one of the biggest advertisers of the Hartford Courant, is pending an investigation by the Connecticut Attorney General’s office for, among other charges, selling used mattresses and bedding as new, as well as selling mattresses that were infested with bedbugs to consumers.
The journalist, George Gombossy, worked at the newspaper for over 40 years before being laid off after the allegations were documented. The paper refused to print the article, and terminated him as a result. The veteran writer is now out of a job and writing his own blog as a result of this ridiculous retaliatory behavior. This situation exposes the reality of both print journalism, and the job market as a whole. Newspapers are cutting corners everywhere, and in this case it is not surprising the Hartford Courant is siding with advertisers rather than take responsibility for the papers credibility. It’s a shame when journalists are being persecuted for telling the truth and informing consumers about such matters.