Rolling Stone sued again over rape story; managing editor steps down

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'A Rape on Campus' Still Causing Trouble for Rolling Stone

(NYMag) -- Four months ago, an independent review concluded that Rolling Stone's article about an alleged gang rape at the University of Virginia was "a journalistic failure that was avoidable." The magazine retracted the story and apologized, but publisher Jann Wenner said no one involved in the story's publication would be fired. Now it appears Wenner may have rethought that stance; on Wednesday night, Rolling Stone revealed that Will Dana, who has served as managing editor since 2005, will depart on August 7. According to the New York Times, he is "not leaving for another job, and his successor has not be named."

When asked if Dana's exit has something to do the campus rape article, Wenner said "many factors go into a decision like this," but he also called Dana, "one of the finest editors I have ever worked with."

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Rolling Stone sued again over rape story; managing editor steps down
A University of Virginia student looks over postings on the door of Peabody Hall related to the Phi Kappa Psi gang rape allegations at the school in Charlottesville, Va., Monday, Nov. 24, 2014. The university has suspended activities at all campus fraternal organizations amid an investigation into a published report in which a student described being sexually assaulted by seven men in 2012 at the Phi Kappa Psi house. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
A few postings on the door of Peabody Hall related to the Phi Kappa Psi gang rape allegations at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Va., Monday, Nov. 24, 2014. The university has suspended activities at all campus fraternal organizations amid an investigation into a published report in which a student described being sexually assaulted by seven men in 2012 at the Phi Kappa Psi house. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
FILE - In this Monday, Nov. 24, 2014, file photo, University of Virginia students walk to campus past the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity house at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Va. Rolling Stone is casting doubt on the account it published of a young woman who says she was gang-raped at a Phi Kappa Psi fraternity party at the school, saying there now appear to be discrepancies in the student's account. (AP Photo/Steve Helber, File)
In this image taken from video, Saturday, Dec. 13, 2014, University of Virginia student Ryan Duffin talks during an interview with The Associated Press in Charlottsville, Va. Duffin and two other friends of an alleged victim of a gang rape at a U.Va. fraternity, challenged details in a Rolling Stone article that used the woman's attack to paint a picture of a culture of sexual violence on the campus was wrong on a number of key points: most important that they didn't encourage her to report the attack and that they were more concerned about their reputations than her well-being. (AP Photo)
In this image taken from video, Saturday, Dec. 13, 2014, University of Virginia student Alex Stock talks during an interview with The Associated Press in Charlottsville, Va. Stock, and two other friends of an alleged victim of a gang rape at a U.Va. fraternity, challenged details in a Rolling Stone article that used the woman's attack to paint a picture of a culture of sexual violence on the campus was wrong on a number of key points: most important that they didn't encourage her to report the attack and that they were more concerned about their reputations than her well-being. (AP Photo)
Tommy Reid, right, the president of the University of Virginia’s Inter-Fraternity Council says that a female student’s account of being sexually assaulted by seven men at a fraternity made him “sick to my stomach.” during a news conference at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Va., Monday, Nov. 24, 2014. The University of Virginia on Saturday suspended activities at all campus fraternal organizations on Saturday in response to the accounts of sexual assault in Rolling Stone. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
Jalen Ross, president of the University of Virginia student council, ponders a question during a news conference at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Va., Monday, Nov. 24, 2014. Ross called the Rolling Stone article on a fraternity house gang rape a “wake-up call” for the university. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
University of Virginia students walk to campus past the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity house at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Va., Monday, Nov. 24, 2014. The university has suspended activities at all campus fraternal organizations amid an investigation into a published report in which a student described being sexually assaulted by seven men in 2012 at the Phi Kappa Psi house. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
Tommy Reid, at podium, the president of the University of Virginia’s Inter-Fraternity Council says that a female student’s account of being sexually assaulted by seven men at a fraternity made him “sick to my stomach.” during a news conference at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Va., Monday, Nov. 24, 2014. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
Jalen Ross, at podium, president of the University of Virginia student council, ponders a question during a news conference at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Va., Monday, Nov. 24, 2014. Ross called the Rolling Stone article on a fraternity house gang rape a “wakeup call” for the university. The University of Virginia on Saturday suspended activities at all campus fraternal organizations on Saturday in response to the accounts of sexual assault in Rolling Stone. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
Tommy Reid, at podium, the president of the University of Virginia’s Inter-Fraternity Council, says that a female student’s account of being sexually assaulted by seven men at a fraternity made him “sick to my stomach.” during a news conference at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Va., Monday, Nov. 24, 2014. The University of Virginia on Saturday suspended activities at all campus fraternal organizations on Saturday in response to the accounts of sexual assault in Rolling Stone. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
The Phi Kappa Psi fraternity house at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Va., Monday, Nov. 24, 2014. A Rolling Stone article last week alleged a gang rape at the house which has since suspended operations. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
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Dana said in a statement, "After 19 years at Rolling Stone, I have decided that it is time to move on," adding, "It has been a great ride and I loved it even more than I imagined I would. I am as excited to see where the magazine goes next as I was in the summer of 1978 when I bought my first issue."

Earlier in the day, three former UVA fraternity members filed a lawsuit against Rolling Stone, Wenner Media, and journalist Sabrina Rubin Erdely for defamation and negligent infliction of emotional distress, saying they suffered "vicious and hurtful attacks" due to the inaccurate November 2014 article. George Elias IV, Stephen Hadford and Ross Fowler are all 2013 graduates and former members of Phi Kappa Psi, where the attack reportedly took place. The suit alleges that the story had a "devastating effect" on the men's reputations, as the article "created a simple and direct way to match the alleged attackers." Their names were posted online and Elias' room was clearly "the mostly likely scene of the alleged crime." The suit says that after the story was published, "family friends, acquaintances, co-workers and reporters easily matched (Elias) as one of the alleged attackers and, among other things, interrogated him, humiliated him, and scolded him."

Hadford and Fowler say they faced a similar reaction. "Plaintiffs have each suffered emotional turmoil, were entirely unable to focus at work and in school following release of the article and are still being questioned often about the article's accusations," the lawsuit states. The men are seeking at least $75,000 in damages for each count. In May UVA associate dean of students Nicole Eramo filed a $7.85 million defamation lawsuit against the same three parties over the way she was portrayed in the article.

What went wrong in the Rolling Stone-UVa. story?

The Rolling Stone U-Va. Story: What Went Wrong

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