The New York Times' Public Editor Arthur Brisbane responded Friday to accusations that a Times story on a gang-rape in Texas seemed to blame the victim, an 11-year-old girl. The original story reported the view of local residents who seemed to be more concerned about the reputations of the 18 young men who raped the girl, and who described the girl as "provocative" and unsupervised by her parents. After an outcry, Brisbane said the story "lacked balance," and "led many readers to interpret the subtext of the story to be: She had it coming." Brisbane said the Times is working on a follow-up story that he hopes will deal with the story more carefully.
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