Mayor Nutter had a problem with a headline on Philly.com, and it’s been changed.
The mayor has been defending chief aide Desiree Peterkin Bell, the target of an anonymous slam in the Daily News posted Friday. Under the headline “Kenney to Nutter aide: Bye, Felicia,” an anonymous spokesperson for Mayor-elect Jim Kenney refused to entertain the idea of retaining Peterkin Bell because of “broad consensus among the city’s business, government and community leaders that she fumbled the communications around the pope’s visit and that she lacks the necessary working relationships to do any better for the DNC.”
According to the Instagram account of reporter William Bender, whose byline adorns the piece, this proved too much for Mayor Michael Nutter. “Mayor Nutter had a full-on hissy fit and demanded that we remove this Clout headline,” Bender wrote on Instagram, screengrabbing the original headline “for posterity.”
The new, softer headline reads, “Kenney has no room for Nutter aide,” and includes the following comment from Nutter:
“Desiree Peterkin-Bell is a consummate professional, highly regarded by the 4 different Mayors with whom she has worked, and has done a fantastic job on behalf of my Administration and the citizens of this City. … And because she is a great professional in her work, she has worked diligently to also ensure a smooth transition for Mayor-Elect Kenney’s Administration, which I know he appreciates. I am sure that Mayor-Elect Kenney will not tolerate cowardly unnamed sources attacking his valued leadership team, and neither will I.”
However, the post itself does not reflect the fact that its dismissive “Bye, Felicia” title changed, or when such a change occurred. (It led Philly.com, easily the region’s largest news website, for a time on Friday under that headline.)
“Bye, Felicia” has become a popular way of denying or dismissing somebody you don’t respect or know well. It stems from a scene in the 1995 movie “Friday.” Ice Cube and Chris Tucker dismiss a crack addict named Felicia who asks them to borrow a car and for a joint.
Philadelphia Media Network spokeswoman Amy Buckman would only say that “Editorial makes decisions to change headlines all the time.” Buckman could not say whether Mayor Nutter complained to a Philly.com editor or one at the Daily News.
“We’re all one newsroom/company,” she said, in reference to the layoffs Friday that officially merged the Inquirer, Daily News and Philly.com.
Disclaimer: Chris Krewson was the executive online editor of The Inquirer from 2007-2010, when it was owned by Brian Tierney. Many friends remain there, as well as at the Daily News and Philly.com.