We have corrected three previous FrontBurner posts concerning Monty Bennett, the Dallas hotelier and publisher of the Dallas Express website. We first wrote about his media involvement in October 2020. In that post, we wrote that Bennett had “ordered up” stories to be published in part of a network of community news outlets called Metric Media News, which a New York Times investigation had found works on a pay-to-play model. Through his lawyer, Bennett insists that he never paid for stories in Metric Media outlets. Although the post did not say that he did so, we have edited the post in response to Bennett’s lawyer’s request to add clarity.
The second time we wrote about Bennett’s media involvement was in January 2021. That post was about Metric Media starting a Dallas site using the name of a historic Black-owned newspaper called the Dallas Express. It was unclear at the time that Bennett was also involved in the operation, and we did not name him in the post. But we did say that site was a “fake news” site and that it engaged in pay to play. Through his lawyer, Bennett insists that Dallas Express is not a “fake news” site and that it does not engage in pay to play. We have removed those descriptors from the post at the request of Bennett’s lawyer.
The third time we wrote about Bennett’s media involvement was in February 2021. That post was about a conflict of interest that Dallas Express did not disclose. By then, Bennett had revealed himself as the publisher with a letter to readers. Bennett’s lawyer complained that the post, by reference to the October 2020 post discussed above, accused Bennett of paying for articles favorable to Bennett’s business interest. We have edited the post per Bennett’s lawyer’s request.