New York Times office
File photo: The New York Times has sacked a technology reporter just six hours after hiring her. Mike Coppola/Getty Images

A new opinion writer at the New York Times has been sacked just seven hours after her employment was announced.

Quinn Norton was let go from the paper after Twitter users discovered past tweets with racial and homophobic slurs. Norton is also a self-labelled friend of Andrew Auernheimer, a famous hacker who was also the webmaster of a neo-Nazi website - The Daily Stormer.

New York Times editorial page editor James Bennet announced in a tweet that Norton would not be working there after all. "Despite our review of Quinn Norton's work and our conversations with her previous employers, this was new information to us," Bennet said. "Based on it, we've decided to go our separate ways."

Norton was sacked just seven hours after the New York Times Communications twitter page tweeted: "Quinn Norton has joined the nytimes editorial board as lead opinion writer on the power, culture and consequences of technology."

Norton responded on Twitter and said she did not support Auernheimer's actions, but that he was a friend. "As I said so many times to the nytimes, no harm no foul. I'm sorry I can't do the work I wanted to do with them. I wish there had been a way, but ultimately, they need to feel safe with how the net will react to their opinion writers."

"One good thing from all this, I have a long list of story ideas I was collecting for the times, and I'm really looking forward to fleshing them out and getting them out into the world," Norton said in another tweet.

According to Cnet, Norton also dated Aaron Swartz, an internet activists who was charged with illegally downloading academic papers. Swartz took his own life in 2013.

Norton tweeted her support of Auernheimer in October. "Weev is a terrible person, and an old friend of mine. I've been very clear on this. Some of my friends are terrible people, and also my friends."

Norton admitted to using a derogatory term of gay people but said she did it to "speak to communities" in "their language:

She also retweeted a post that used the N-word. She said the original tweet was using the racist word in a sarcastic manner.