Denver Newspaper Agency exec who approved distribution of controversial Obsession DVD is out

A banner from the Obsession website.

The Denver Post and many other newspapers across the country took plenty of heat for their decision to insert sampler versions of Obsession: Radical Islam's War Against the West, a DVD that many subscribers saw as a not-so-subtle promotion for Republican presidential aspirant John McCain, in their Sunday, September 14 editions: read about the brouhaha here and here. Now, Greig Smith, the executive for the Denver Newspaper Agency who approved the deal, won't be repeating the feat. An article in today's Denver Post about the hiring of Marty Sokoler as vice president of major accounts for the DNA notes that he's replacing Smith, "who left the DNA last week."

There's no telling if the Obsession issue played a part in Smith's departure. After all, plenty of people are getting out of the newspaper business these days, for a gazillion good reasons. Still, the timing of this switchover can't help raising eyebrows. And if another DVD is submitted for insertion, I'll bet Sokoler will take the time to actually watch it before taking the advertiser's dough. -- Michael Roberts

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts