Notes From Our Online Readers

Readers respond to Erika Fry's "Escape from Thailand"

In September, Erika Fry, a CJR assistant editor, wrote of her “Escape from Thailand,” an ordeal that began when she was charged with criminal defamation for a story she wrote for the Bangkok Post, about an official accused of plagiarizing a dissertation on organic asparagus. The story drew a wide, varied response. Here’s a selection of what readers had to say:

I learnt some time ago now, after more than thirty years in the media (outside Thailand) that the last people you “trust” are your employers… Thailand is life “through the looking glass.” One only needs to read a chronology of the country’s history since World War II to understand that the rule of law is secondary to the rule of the gun. Honesty is an unknown commodity in Thailand and the foreigner is always treated like a trespasser. —Wayne Taylor

When in Rome, do as the Romans do… Freedom of speech is not to be exercised without wisdom and careful tread in a culture that clearly doesn’t provide liberty for it. —Michelle

Michelle, it is good to respect a culture, but corruption is not culture. In fact, it’s not even Thai. —Jeff Studebaker

It’s kind of pitiful that journalists in oppressive foreign environments are willing to stick their necks out to speak truth to power, but the fawning MSM here gives Obama a free pass despite the constitutional protection they enjoy. —Padikiller

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The Editors are the staffers of Columbia Journalism Review.