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Who was David Carr and why should you remember him?

The journalist died last night aged 58.

Obit Carr Source: AP/Press Association Images

THIS MORNING, THE world is mourning the passing of New York Times journalist David Carr, who passed away last night aged 58.

Carr was found collapsed in the newsroom and died shortly thereafter. Earlier in the evening, he had moderated a discussion on the Edward Snowden documentary Citizenfour.

Who was he?

David Carr was a media columnist for The New York Times and arguably one of the most respected journalists in the industry. He came to international prominence when he starred in Page One: Inside The New York Times, a 2011 documentary about the newspaper as it attempts to adapt to the digital age.

One of the most famous scenes from the film features Carr mercilessly taking down the guys from Vice Magazine.

Source: howtoplayalone/YouTube

Carr was one of the most influential commentators on media and culture in the world – indeed, he is widely credited with helping launch the career of Lena Dunham.

Just this week, he was weighing in on the ongoing Brian Williams saga.

He cultivated a strong following on Twitter with over 468,000 followers.

Additionally, he was a regular fixture at the Web Summit, at which he famously granted an interview to a DIT journalism student. He interviewed Bono at last year’s event.

The veteran journalist was also an author and documented his struggles with cocaine addiction in his 2008 memoir The Night of the Gun. (Here’s an excerpt.)

TL;DR – he was utterly beloved.

Why should you remember him?

Because he was an advocate of journalism, a talented writer and a total one-off.

As Dean Baquet, The New York Times’ executive editor, put it:

He was our biggest champion, and his unending passion for journalism and for truth will be missed by his family at The Times, by his readers around the world and by people who love journalism.

He was also known for dispensing nuggets of wisdom, many of which are doing the rounds on Twitter this morning.

The tributes that have been pouring in for Carr on Twitter demonstrate exactly how and why he should be remembered.

Here’s a sampling.

May he rest in peace.

Unfamiliar with Carr’s work? Here’s a good place to start

9 pieces of useful advice for young journalists >

About the author:

Amy O'Connor

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