Katie Couric Out at Yahoo News

Couric's tenure marred by criticism over deceptive editing

Katie Couric
Katie Couric / Getty Images
July 31, 2017

Katie Couric and Yahoo News parted ways on Friday after four years of Couric serving as the organization's global news anchor.

Couric's headlining interview show for Yahoo News has been canceled. Her $10 million contract ended in March 2017 and was renewed through June. Couric will continue working with Yahoo News and its corporate parent Oath on a project-by-project basis.

"Over the last four years, Katie has created a vast portfolio of work that has been equal parts inspiring, thought-provoking and fun to watch," an Oath spokesperson told Recode. "We're proud of everything she has accomplished and look forward to exploring ways to work together in the future."

Couric's four-year tenure was marred by criticism she received in the wake of revelations she and her fellow filmmakers deceptively edited an interview with gun rights activists in their 2016 Under the Gun film. In that film, a group of activists with the Virginia Citizens Defense League are shown sitting in silence for nine seconds following a question from Couric about terrorism and background checks. However, raw audio obtained by the Washington Free Beacon shows several of the activists immediately responded to Couric's question.

Couric and the film's director later admitted to editing in the silence and apologized "if anyone felt" the deceptive edit made them look bad.

A second Couric film, 2014's Fed Up, faced accusations of similar deceptive editing soon after.

Despite a number of calls for Yahoo News to fire Couric over the deceptive editing, Yahoo News stood by her in part because Couric's work on Fed Up and Under the Gun were done outside of her work for Yahoo.

"Yahoo was not involved in the creation and production of the independent documentaries, Under the Gun and Fed Up," a Yahoo spokesperson who did not want to be identified told the Free Beacon last June. "We're confident in the work of the Yahoo News team, which adheres to the highest standards of journalism."

Couric, who has publicly opined on media trust and fake news in recent months, is still facing legal trouble over the deceptive edit in Under the Gun. While a district court judge dismissed the Virginia Citizen Defense League's $12 million defamation lawsuit against Couric in June, the gun rights group has announced they plan to appeal the decision.

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