Let’s just get this out of the way. At no point did Sarah Koenig or I ever supply or post Jay’s personal information anywhere. Shortly after the first podcast someone tweeted at me and asked me Jay’s last name. I tweeted back that it’s “Wilds”. I thought nothing of it since the trial and case documents are public domain, and some of the appeal documents are easily found online and his name is all over them. Sarah immediately contacted me and asked me to delete that tweet.
That was the start of delicate (ok sometimes pretty pointed) negotiations between Sarah and I. She had certain journalistic standards and had made promises to her sources about how they would be portrayed in the series (first name, full name, name replaced, voice scrambled, etc), but of course I was under no obligation to follow her rules. I never saw reason to follow them in fact, because as I’ve said a hundred times, none of the trial testimony is under seal. Its public domain. I also have no connection to This American Life, no involvement in the creation of the show, and saw no reason to be obligated to them. Continue reading