Talia Lavin


Researcher, Media Matters for America

Freelance Writer

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Talia Lavin is an “extremism researcher” for the left-of-center media criticism organization Media Matters for America, a position she’s held since July 2018. Lavin has also been a freelance writer for publications such as the Washington Post and Lilith magazine. 1 She resigned from a prior position as a fact-checker with the New Yorker in June 2018 after she falsely labeled an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agent’s U.S. Marine Corps unit tattoo a neo-Nazi symbol.2

Political Positions

In an October 24, 2018 article in the Washington Post, Lavin denounced conservative criticism of left-wing billionaire and donor George Soros as an anti-Semitic “dog-whistle.”3

Personal Background

Lavin graduated from Harvard University in 2012. She previously worked as an editorial fellow for the Huffington Post, and continues to contribute to HuffPost as a guest writer.4

Tattoo Controversy

In June 2018, Lavin had to resign from her position as a fact-checker for the New Yorker after she made statements appearing to falsely claim an ICE agent was a neo-Nazi.5 6 The agent was a former U.S. Marine wounded during military service and the tattoo was a symbol of his platoon, not (as Lavin had suggested) an Iron Cross, a German military symbol used by the Nazi regime. While Lavin wrote that she was resigning in order to protect the New Yorker, the publication distanced itself from Lavin. She later claimed that ICE unfairly targeted her for her tweet and that it criticized her in part because she identifies herself as “a fat Jewish feminist with a Harvard education.”7


In October 2020, Lavin published a book titled Culture Warlords, where she discussed her personal investigations into online communities vocalizing and spreading white supremacist rhetoric, misogyny, far-right ideology, and antisemitism. 8


  1. “Talia Lavin.” Linkedin. Accessed October 31, 2018.
  2. Lavin, Talia B. “Some Personal News.” Twitter. July 20, 2018. Accessed October 29, 2018.^tfw|twcamp^tweetembed|twterm^1020293791746584576&ref_url=
  3. Lavin, Talia. “Conspiracy Theories about Soros Aren’t Just False. They’re Anti-Semitic.” The Washington Post. October 24, 2018. Accessed October 31, 2018.
  4. “Talia Lavin.” The Huffington Post. Accessed October 31, 2018.
  5. Lavin, Talia B. “Some Personal News.” Twitter. July 20, 2018. Accessed October 29, 2018.^tfw|twcamp^tweetembed|twterm^1020293791746584576&ref_url=
  6. Paiella@GMPaiella, Gabriella. “New Yorker Fact-Checker Speaks After Resignation Over ICE Tweet.” The Cut. June 25, 2018. Accessed October 29, 2018.
  7. Altman, Howard. “Writer Resigns from New Yorker after Twitter Flap over Pasco Marine’s Tattoo.” Tampa Bay, Florida News. June 22, 2018. Accessed October 31, 2018.
  8. Lavin, Talia. “Culture Warlords: My Journey into the Dark Web of White Supremacy.” Library Journal. Accessed November 2, 2022.

Connected Organizations

  1. Huffington Post (HuffPost) (For-profit)
    Former Editorial Fellow
  2. Media Matters for America (Non-profit)
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