Lauren Gustus: Threats won’t stop Tribune reporters and photographers

Every day, we go to bat for you.

(Francisco Kjolseth | The Salt Lake Tribune) Executive Editor Lauren Gustus.

Photographer Rick Egan captured a video from a Kyle Rittenhouse Appreciation Day event in Salt Lake’s Washington Park earlier this month.

In the video, a woman with a bullhorn approaches Rick and asks if he works at The Tribune. Another woman soon appears with a sign that says, “Salty Tribune Fake News.” The one with the bullhorn tells Rick they may have to come to our “little office.”

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) Around 50-100 people gather at Washington Square for a 2nd Amendment Rally, and Kyle Rittenhouse Appreciation Day, on Saturday, December 4, 2021.

We didn’t publish the video online because we don’t give a platform to those who obfuscate the truth.

But the experience was a book end for Rick, a Tribune photographer for 37 years. You might remember he was pepper sprayed by protesters at a Jan. 6 gathering at the Utah Capitol.

Unfortunately, he’s not alone. Users of the messaging platform Telegram targeted one of our reporters this month, making threats, saying there were “some spies in Telegram looking to frame anyone they can,” and that a specific individual “must be stopped.”

This year we’ve hosted multiple trainings for our team on how to stay safe, at a protest or online.

I am grateful for the commitment of our journalists, whose resolve seems to strengthen in the face of what is meant to be intimidating behavior.

Every day they go to bat for you. For transparency. For open government. For fewer secrets and more accountability.

And our reporters, photographers and editors will do it again in 2022. Because you have supported them. You are the counter to those who threaten to dismantle the truth. You are holding us together.

Please consider including local reporting, and The Tribune, in your year-end giving. Scan the QR code below to make a donation, or click here.

Through the end of the day today, every gift is being matched thanks to a generous donation from Zions Bank.

Thanks for reading in 2021,


Lauren Gustus EOY