Joshua Wolf Shenk resigns as editor of Believer magazine after showing employees on Zoom call

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Joshua Wolf Shenk resigns as editor of Believer magazine after taking a bath during a Zoom phone call with the staff … when he got out and forgot to turn off his camera or grab a towel!

  • The editor-in-chief of Believer magazine and Artistic and Executive Director of the Black Mountain Institute, resigned after showing his staff at a Zoom meeting in February
  • Shenk was in a bath during the Zoom call to relieve nerve pain related to fibromyalgia
  • When Shenk got up to charge his computer without turning off the camera or covering the bottom half of his body, he exposed himself to a dozen staffers
  • Shenk is the author of the books ‘Lincoln’s Melancholy’ released in 2005 and the book ‘Powers of Two’ from 2014

Joshua Wolf Shenk, editor-in-chief at Believer magazine and Artistic and Executive Director of the Black Mountain Institute, resigned after showing his staff at a Zoom meeting.

In February, Shenk got up on a Zoom call and exposed himself to a dozen executives from Believer magazine and the Black Mountain Institute, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Shenk’s literary agent, Ira Silverberg, told the Los Angeles Times that he was in a bath during the Zoom conversation to relieve nerve pain related to fibromyalgia.

Shenk had chosen a virtual background to hide his location and was wearing a mesh shirt on top, but when he got up to charge his computer without turning off the camera or covering the bottom half of his body, he exposed himself to executives.

Joshua Wolf Shenk, editor-in-chief at Believer magazine and Artistic and Executive Director of the Black Mountain Institute, resigned after showing his staff at a Zoom meeting

Joshua Wolf Shenk, editor-in-chief at Believer magazine and Artistic and Executive Director of the Black Mountain Institute, resigned after showing his staff at a Zoom meeting

Joshua Wolf Shenk was editor-in-chief of Believer magazine (pictured) before resigning

Joshua Wolf Shenk was editor-in-chief of Believer magazine (pictured) before resigning

On March 24, the publisher of Believer magazine and the staff of the Black Mountain Institute, a center for literary arts at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, were informed that Shenk quit his job over the incident, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Shenk shared the news of his resignation in a suicide note.

He called the Zoom incident “a stupid, reckless choice to ignore the right environment and clothing for a Zoom meeting. I have crossed a line that I cannot walk over. I regret the harm you have suffered – and, by extension, the people we serve. I apologize.’ He wrote.

At least two witnesses to the incident reported it to the university’s Office of Equal Employment and Title IX, LA Times reported.

The university rejected and closed Title IX complaints when Shenk resigned.

After my error of judgment, I decided to resign so that the work of BMI – fueling culture in Southern Nevada, publishing The Believer, and hosting writers who are being persecuted in their home countries – could best continue in their extraordinarily skilled hands, ”Shenk said in a separate statement to the LA Times.

Silverberg said Shenk had already negotiated a leadership transition at the institute prior to the incident.

The university declined to comment, saying it “does not discuss staff matters,” The Times reported.

Shenk is the author of the books ‘Lincoln’s Melancholy’ released in 2005 and the book ‘Powers of Two’ from 2014.

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