Business Insider parent company Axel Springer told Puck News on Wednesday that Bill Ackman was “completely losing it” amid the hedge fund manager’s attempts to pressure the company into disavowing a Business Insider article that revealed his wife’s plagiarism.
After Ackman helped oust Harvard University President Claudine Gay from her position this month with claims that Gay had engaged in plagiarism, Business Insider revealed that Ackman’s wife Neri Oxman had “plagiarized some passages” in her own dissertation.
Following a barrage of complaints from Ackman over the report, Axel Springer announced on Sunday that it had decided to review the article, despite, as CNN reported, “acknowledging that the veracity of the outlet’s reporting appeared to be sound.”
On Wednesday, Axel Springer communications director Adib Sisani told Puck News’ Dylan Byers that the company was reviewing the article after Ackman suggested criticism of his wife’s plagiarism was motivated by anti-Semitism.
“That’s a very hard red line,” Sisani told the news outlet. “Those are accusations that we’re going to make triple-sure are outrageous and not based in reality.”
He added, however, that “most people underestimated the way that Bill Ackman is completely losing it.”
Sisani also revealed that the review of the article would soon come to a conclusion and that “the outcome of the review is pretty clear.”
“We believe in our own editorial standards. Of course there’s not a bias in the sense that his wife is Jewish—that’s so far out there,” Sisani said. “What remains is: Did we give him and his wife enough time to comment? I’m sure there’s an email trail that’s easily reviewed.”
He concluded, “The facts of the story stand. I’m certain the sourcing and technical journalistic work done was spotless.”
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