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Boston Globe Investigating Editor Brian McGrory Over Text Message

The editor of The Boston Globe can’t remember sending a text message to a former female staff member asking “What do you generally wear when you write?” but he doesn’t deny it.

The Boston Globe is investigating the incident, after the former staff member posted a text message exchange with Brian McGrory on Twitter and described it as an example of sexual harassment.

McGrory, who worked as a reporter, columnist, and lower-level editor of the Globe before becoming editor of the whole newspaper in December 2012, sent a memo to staff Wednesday saying that he and the former female staffer, Hilary Sargent, dated many years ago and had been on good terms in the intervening years.

McGrory in the memo denies ever harassing or demeaning Sargent or anyone else. He touts his record of hiring and promoting women at the newspaper.

Sargent worked for boston.com, a web site affiliated with The Boston Globe, between 2014 and 2016.

McGrory wrote in the memo that “months after Hilary left boston.com, we would sometimes exchange text messages that included the kind of personal banter of two people very familiar with each other. I regret that very much for reasons that go far beyond the Globe.”

The memo was first reported by media commentator Dan Kennedy on his web site, Media Nation.

Sargent has been a frequent critic of the Globe, particularly in the wake of the newspaper’s coverage of sexual harassment on Beacon Hill. Sargent has posted descriptions on Twitter of instances of sexual harassment she says she experienced while working as an intern at the Globe about two decades ago and instances involving other women.

In December 2017 she wrote that dozens of current and former Globe staff members had contacted her with stories about sexual harassment by other employees at the Globe.

After McGrory published an apology in December concerning the case of a staff reporter who was forced to resign after making sexually charged statements to a female colleague, Sargent posted the following tweet:

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