Tampa Bay Times’ Darryl Shaw feature has glaring omissions

tampa bay times David Straz
They forgot to mention that time he loaned them $1.5M.

If you haven’t heard of Darryl Shaw, the Tampa Bay Times says it’s because the wealthy investor “hasn’t courted the press.”

That’s a half-truth. He may not court the press — he underwrites them.

The Times on Thursday published the puffiest of puff pieces on Shaw this week. Over the course of nearly 3,000 words, journalist Charlie Frago profiles the “polite, but reserved” 56-year-old who is investing part of his fortune in new developments slated for Ybor City.

The column covers everything from his role in building a successful veterinary emergency and specialty hospital chain to his upbringing in apartheid-era South Africa. We’re sure Shaw opposed the racist stiflingly oppressive government, but for some reason, that’s up to the reader to infer.

But there’s an even more glaring omission.

Frago makes no mention — and the Times’ added no editor’s note — disclosing Shaw was among the investors who bailed the paper out when it was on the brink of collapse four years ago.

As the Times reported in 2018, Shaw is one of the eight members of FBN Partners, which gave the paper $12 million. Additionally, he loaned the newspaper $1.5 million in 2017.

There’s nothing nefarious about the loan on its face. In fact, Shaw’s statement that the loan wasn’t profit-driven but borne out of a “desire to be supportive of a free press” would only bolster the narrative in Thursday’s feature.

Its exclusion, however, makes it seem like the opposite.

Perhaps a paragraph or two on his helping hand could sub in for the section where Frago gives airtime to City Council member Orlando Gudes who, as Florida Politics readers know, is facing credible sexual harassment allegations and may not even live in the district he represents — which, as the Times notes, includes the Ybor City properties owned by Shaw.

Tampa Bay Times readers may want to know these things. It’d be interesting to know why the Times doesn’t want them to.

Peter Schorsch

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises Media and is the publisher of FloridaPolitics.com, INFLUENCE Magazine, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. Previous to his publishing efforts, Peter was a political consultant to dozens of congressional and state campaigns, as well as several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella. Follow Peter on Twitter @PeterSchorschFL.


Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

Publisher: Peter Schorsch @PeterSchorschFL

Contributors & reporters: Phil Ammann, Roseanne Dunkelberger, A.G. Gancarski, Anne Geggis, Kelly Hayes, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, Gray Rohrer, Jesse Scheckner, Christine Sexton, Andrew Wilson, Wes Wolfe, and Mike Wright.

Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @PeterSchorschFL
Phone: (727) 642-3162
Address: 204 37th Avenue North #182
St. Petersburg, Florida 33704

Sign up for Sunburn