#G123* – BUT POLICE ARE ALLOWED ….
In consideration of a blogger’s right to privacy, there has never been a rush to Court to expose authors for the use of the simple device of a ‘nom de plume’, under what law is a blogger denied the right to privacy.
I would be the very first to consider it was right to expose the identity of some of the filth on the outer limits of the blogosphere who shelter, filth and unsubstantiated defamation behind some childish ‘nom de plume’ or obfuscation by anonimity and I can think of several such slimes around EUkip acting to try to shelter the corruption and venal greed of the Party and its leadership – but no one gives them any more credance than they would give the failed leadership of EUkip.
That such as Junius, like Nighthawk are forced to tell their tale, verrified as it is, under a ‘nom de plume’ is rather more indicative of their proximity to the centre of the information they distribute it is more a ‘nom de guerre’ to maintain their sources to expose the mismanagement and self enrichment of their respective organisations.
One can think of many instances within the ‘MSM’ where such a style of anonimity has not only existed but been passed from generation to generation!
NightJack: When the blogging biter’s bit
The ‘outing’ of a policeman as the author of a highly controversial blog shows the power of this strange medium, says Damian Thompson.
But this foolish little man – a member of a British Police murder squad is so ashamed of his job he tries to keep his identity secret! I wonder if he can remember which pocket he put his Swiss Army Knife in and one is bound to have a conker in it with a bit of string!!
NightJack: When the blogging biter’s bit
The ‘outing’ of a policeman as the author of a highly controversial blog shows the power of this strange medium, says Damian Thompson.
By Damian Thompson
Published: 7:31PM BST 17 Jun 2009
Bloggers can no longer escape with their anonymity intact.
In April, an anonymous police blog written by a detective calling himself “NightJack” won the Orwell Prize for online political writing. And it deserved to, wrote one newspaper, “because it took you inside real life in a way you couldn’t go by yourself”. But now you can’t go inside real life with NightJack. Visit the site, and you read: “The authors have deleted this blog.
The content is no longer available.” Thishas been taken down in its entirety because the Lancashire detective lost a court case to stop his identity being revealed by The Times – the very paper that praised him to the skies when he won the Orwell Prize.
NightJack is Richard Horton, a detective of Lancashire Constabulary.
Yesterday, he revealed how the paper had planned to end his anonymity. “One morning I heard a rumour that they had sent a photographer to my home. Later in the afternoon came the inevitable phone calls, first to me and then to Lancashire Constabulary asking for confirmation that I was the author of the NightJack blog. “That was easily the worst afternoon of my life. I knew that it was serious and quite rightly my employers have investigated it as a matter of misconduct. With that under way, I went to court to stop The Times from publishing my name, my photograph or any personal details about my home and my family.
Over the years, I have dealt with some unpleasant characters. I know that some of them have made determined but unsuccessful efforts to find me… “
In the event, I failed at court, as it was decided that the public right to know about me outweighed any claim to personal privacy. My blog is gone now, deleted, slowly melting away post by post as it drops off the edge of the Google cache.” This is a complicated business. The newspaper’s media correspondent, Patrick Foster, claims that he wanted to expose someone he felt was revealing confidential details about cases, some involving sex crimes against children, that could be traced back to genuine prosecutions.
But, says Dan Collins of Monday Books (which has published the work of two anonymous police bloggers), “revealing the guy’s name and police force is only going to make it easier to piece together the jigsaw of real cases”. And, besides, bloggers haven’t forgotten that it was The Sunday Times that ‘outed’ a young woman who wrote a blog about her sexual exploits called Girl With a One-Track Mind – driving her into hiding, she claims.
On that occasion, no lofty justification for the exposure was offered. But do bloggers have a right to anonymity?
Mr Justice Eady did not seem to think so, siding with the newspaper against Mr Horton.
The truth is that bloggers who live by the sword can expect to die by the sword: it’s hard to feel sympathy for a writer whose stock in trade is the revelation of secrets but who behaves like an outraged dowager when his or her secret is revealed.
I’ve cheerfully revealed the identity of a blogger myself in the past: one “Cranmer”, whose anti-Catholic rants and distasteful speculation about the progress of Jade Goody’s cancer (while she was still alive) thoroughly merited an outing.
Yet there are many other writers who, while they don’t enjoy a legal right to anonymity, do us all a favour by blogging anonymously. Most of them are in the public sector. And that makes sense, because taxpayers want to know how their money is really spent – and how to beat an increasingly obstructive and secretive system.
NightJack’s most famous post was a guide for “law-abiding types who find themselves under suspicion or under arrest. It works for the bad guys so make it work for you.” Horton’s tips: get your complaint in first (“racism and homophobia are your friends”); never explain to the police, because they’ll use it against you; claim suicidal thoughts. You can see why NightJack’s bosses want to discipline him – but also why he attracted 60,000 readers a day. (Incidentally, the arrest tips have been copied all over cyberspace.)
The public sector really can’t stand independent bloggers.
From November 2007 until March last year, a 33-year-old woman working for a government department wrote a blog about bogus initiatives and overstaffing under the name Civil Serf. “I know people within eight desks of me whose jobs could be deleted overnight with no discernible impact on our performance,” she wrote.
Instead, it was her website that was deleted and an inquiry launched into her identity.
Nearly every branch of the state has spawned anonymous online comment. There’s a ferocious NHS Blog Doctor, who recently humiliated cancer specialist Dr Karol Sikora for wrongly claiming to be a professor at Imperial College, London.
There are many angry teachers’ blogs, including one called The Report Card: Battling Idiocy on a Daily Basis, in which colleagues are given nicknames such as Whingebag and Smileroid.
There’s an Army Rumour Service (a forum rather than a blog) in which Service personnel open fire on politicians they loathe. But then hatred of Labour is a thread running through most anonymous blogs.
It’s a satisfying coincidence: the most control-freak government in British history comes to power just as technology evolves that allows employees to broadcast uncontrolled thoughts to anyone who wants to read them. Political bloggers have given the Government a particularly hard time this year.
In April, Paul Staines, the Right-wing libertarian who writes as “Guido Fawkes“, was involved in the expose of a Downing Street smear campaign against senior Tories led by Gordon Brown’s adviser Damian McBride, who was forced to resign.
Cue much crowing from bloggers about the weakness of the “dead tree press”.
Yet within a few weeks the mainstream media (“MSM“) had broken a far bigger story: The Daily Telegraph’s investigation into MPs‘ expenses claims, which as a political scandal dwarfs the (admittedly gripping) McBride affair.
Cue grouchiness not just from Staines but from several political bloggers, none of whom was able to do much with the expenses scandal except comment on it. The truth is that the Bloggers vs MSM model only really applies to America, with its pompous networks and moribund regional newspapers. “In Britain, the ‘them and us’ approach made sense 10 years ago, when the world was simpler,” explains Shane Richmond , the Telegraph’s communities editor. “But these days, technology is erasing distinctions between newspapers, blogs, micro-blogs, social networks and broadcasting.
The first wave of bloggers have become an elite, threatened by social networks that are trying to do to them what they once tried to do to newspapers.” Seen in this light, the attempts by political bloggers to hang on to their anonymity can seem positively quaint.
On Newsnight in 2007, a heavily silhouetted Guido Fawkes told the Guardian’s Michael White: “I very much doubt that you would recognise me.”
“Yes I would, you’re Paul Staines – I saw you at a party the other day,” replied White.
This is not to deny that blogging has had a profound effect on the media. “Dead tree” correspondents who ignore this fact do so at their peril.
On the other hand, the blogging format can be a powerful source of information, comment and mischief in the hands of a journalist who understands it. As Benedict Brogan, The Daily Telegraph’s chief political commentator, recalls: “I’ve had Cabinet ministers on the phone to me within seconds of making a snarky comment about them on my blog. “The same applies to the world of religion: I don’t know whether to be flattered or irritated by the lengths to which a certain cardinal went in order to silence my own Telegraph blog.
Blogging is an art.
The intrinsic messiness and spontaneity of the form make it more, not less, important to write in a disciplined fashion.
The unreadable websites of five years ago have largely disappeared: teenagers are bored with keeping online diaries and (except at election times) the only local politicians who can be bothered to blog are Lib Dem bedsit councillors obsessed with dog mess and broken paving stones.
But good blogs are one of the joys of the 21st century.
No one set out to create this strange medium: it just evolved.
And we’re lucky that it did.
Damian Thompson is Blogs Editor of the Telegraph Media Group
To view the original of the article CLICK HERE
When you think of the Blogosphere’s influence relative to the £Millions spent on ‘MSM‘ and then consider some of the stories lifted by ‘MSM‘ from Blogs and the FACT that ‘MSM‘ is in ever increasing collapse – even the Telegraph, currently crowing over having BOUGHT a disc from a particularly seedy contact – who we all know was touting it around looking for the best bid – can hardly claim great journalistic cuddos from publishing it!
Where was the ‘MSM‘ when the blogosphere (well actually internet) exposed the lies of Tony Blair that led Britain into an unlawfull war in Iraq and the war crimes and killings that Blair, Brown, straw and the rest of the war criminals were guilty of. Where is the ‘MSM‘ when the cover-ups continue with secret enquiries hidden behind closed doors?
I guess it is all too easy to answer when you realise just how many journalists have lost their jobs and how the ‘MSM‘ is cutting costs in line with plummeting advertising revenue.
Minded that the Government, Labour Party and their puppets and QUANGOs are Britain’s largest single advertiser one can hardly expect the ‘MSM‘ to upset the KLEPTOCRACY that now rules our Country imposing the laws of the corrupt and undemocratic EU at the expense of our future and for the benefit of their bank accounts and pensions.
When it comes to the braggadocio of The Telegraph perhaps they could explain how having the money to publish the receipts which Heather Brooks had the bottle to force the Government, through the Courts, to provide under HER FOI is such a coup!
One does note that it was The Mail which published this picture and The MoS had intended purchasing the disc and returning it to the Government to make the far more valid point that The Government was utterly incompetent and couldn’t even manage to control its OWN data!
However The Telegraph published the material and thereby ensured that there was a backlash against the LibLabCon which meant that rather than dealing with substantive issues regarding The EU and its damaging and odious nature during the EU elections. The Telegraph opened the way for the clowns inm EUkip who were heading for 0 to 3 or 4 MEPs reflective of their utter incompetence, dishonesty and corruption in office with 12 MEPs in 2004 and the catastrophic lack of leadership since were able to raise their profile.
The panic then started as it was Farage’s last ditch hope that realising he had led his party to destruction due to his complete lack of any Officer Qualities or leadership ability raised the spectre of The BNP. Had EUkip not mentioned The BNP in ts every utterance, even stealing/sharing their campaigning concept of Churchill & WWII the BNP would have further sunk into oblivion and EUkip would have got its just deserts with 1 or 2 MEPs.
It could thus be claimed that the heroic efforets of The Telegraph (well the use of the Barclay brothers’ money for no journalistic skill was required) led to the burgeoning of the utterly useless and venal EUkip and the growth of The BNP to having the mock credibility of 2 MEPs!
I for one am more impressed with the Bloggosphere’s revelations such as Dr. Richard North on EU Referendum or his relentless and accurate reportage of matters military and the crass mismanagement of our troops as shown on his Defence Blog CLICK HERE
When it comes to The EU, Defence, Global Warming for starters perhaps the wanabe journalists left stranded in the office scouring the internet for stories to rewrite, as they await the new story PURCHASED by the Barclays, might care to start scavenging at this blog or one of Richard’s and in their down time read some of the books written by Christopher Booker and Dr. Richard North!
Details of Richard’s latest book can be seen if you CLICK HERE.
OFF TO THE PUB?
Or is it off to book some more motorists?
Bloggers do not have the right to keep their identities secret, High Court rules Internet bloggers do not have the right to keep their identities secret, according to a landmark High Court ruling.
By Richard Edwards, Crime Correspondent
Published: 6:55AM BST 17 Jun 2009
In the first case dealing with the privacy of bloggers, Mr Justice Eady refused to protect the anonymity of a police officer who wrote a prize-winning blog called NightJack. The officer, Richard Horton, 45, a detective constable with Lancashire Constabulary, had written a behind-the-scenes insight into policing.
He sought an injunction to prevent him being named by a newspaper, arguing that it could put him at risk of disciplinary action for breaching regulations. Mr Horton’s blog ridiculed “a number of senior politicians” and advised “decent” members of the public under police investigation to “complain about every officer . . . show no respect to the legal system or anybody working in it.”
He is one of around a dozen police officers to run popular blog sites, along with scores of other public servants, which anonymously document their daily life.
judge ruled that Mr Horton had no “reasonable expectation” to anonymity because “blogging is essentially a public rather than a private activity”.
“It would seem to be quite legitimate for the public to be told who it was who was choosing to make, in some instances, quite serious criticisms of police activities and, if it be the case, that frequent infringements of police discipline regulations were taking place,” the judge added.
As a result of him being identified to them, Lancashire Constabulary launched an investigation and issued Mr Horton with a written warning.
The blog has been removed.
NightJack had won a special award at the Orwell Prize ceremony in April, leading to speculation about its author’s identity. Some of his website’s entries attracted nearly half a million readers a week, including anecdotes about the cases on which he had worked.
One described an inquiry into the rape of “Melissa”, a 14-year-old who was plied with alcohol and then raped in a hotel room.
Mr Horton wrote that the offender had an Asian name, had hepatitis, and assaulted the girl at a seaside hotel, while filming it on his mobile phone.
It is believed to relate to Ajmal Mohammad, who had received an indefinite sentence at Preston Crown Court for raping a drunken teenager in a Blackpool hotel room.
The court heard that he was infected with Hepatitis C, and had filmed the attack on his phone.
Mr Horton disclosed his suspicions that a key witness had misled police about her knowledge of the sex attack.
In another post entitled “A Survival Guide For Decent Folk”, Mr Horton offered advice to people who found themselves the subject of a police investigation. His advice was to “complain about every officer… [and] show no respect to the legal system or anybody working in it”.
A Lancashire police spokesman said: “The commentary in the blog is indeed the work of a serving Lancashire detective and clearly the views and opinions expressed are those of the author himself and not those of the wider Constabulary. “We have conducted a full internal investigation and the officer accepts that parts of his public commentary have fallen short of the standards of professional behaviour we expect of our police officers. “He has been spoken to regarding his professional behaviour and, in line with disciplinary procedures, has been issued with a written warning.”
To view the original article CLICK HERE
Clearly Mr. Justice Eady was wrong in his judgement, but why am I not surprised!
We the public are, as a result of Eady’s perverse judgement, are the loosers.
It is interesting to note that once again Eady is inventing law to suit his puppet masters on the hoof again!
Consider: it is NOT a crime in Britain to call yourself by any name you choose. I could if I wished call myself William Shakespeare and set up in business with a web site offering a service to clear drains – it is only should I use such an identity to commit a crime or perpetrate a fraud thereby that I would be in breech of law. Perhaps since Nighthawk was neither committing a crime nor seeking to act fraudulently nor mislead for profit Eady would seem to be in breech of law under Human Rights and the right to privacy.
In this increasingly grubby society promoted by the Government whatever be its stripe and denigrated by erradication of any concept of meaningfull democracy and the revolting promotion of Political Correctness and perversion as an acceptable norm aided and abetted by men of questionable morality like Mr. Justice Eady – we the public are the losers.
I do appreciate however that it is difficult after some 60 years for prostitutes to obtain authentic Prison Camp attire from the death camps of Germany and the theatrical costumieres are not up to the standards that Oswold Mosley’s London would have expected!!
I have little time for anonimous bloggers but I do concede there are examples where sources would dry up were identities known and were that the case the legitimate efforts of the whistle blowers exposing what is clearly a corrupt Police Force acting as tax collectors and enforcers for the Kleptocratic QUANGOcracy that substitutes for a Government will find their task more difficult.
It will become harder for decent men and women trying to acquit their duty to expose corruption more difficult in the light of Eady’s pandering to the needs of his puppet masters.
Perhaps we should be thankfull Eady was not on the bench in the days of William Joyce or Jack Profumo! Perhaps he hopes to follow his fellow puppet the sordid and corrupt Lord Cullen of Cover-Up into The House of Lords – the dustbin for butt lickers and those who have prostituted our Country to vassal status in the EU! All 742 of them!!!
You will note that neither my Blogs nor any item I have EVER published on the internet has EVER been ‘anonimouse’. I have no need to hide my identity to tell the truth 😉
“In politics, stupidity is not a handicap.”
Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821),
for all my contact details & Blogs:
‘The arrogance and hubris of corrupt politicians
will be responsible for every drop of blood spilt
in the Wars of Disassociation, if Britain does not
leave the EU.
The ugly, centralised, undemocratic supra national policies being imposed by the centralised and largely unelected decisionmakers of The EU for alien aims, ailien values and to suit alien needs stand every possibility of creating 200,000,000 deaths across EUrope as a result of the blind arrogance and hubris of the idiologues in the central dictatorship, and their economic illiteracy marching hand in glove with the idiocy of The CAP & The CFP – both policies which deliver bills, destroy lives and denude food stocks.
The EU, due to the political idiocy and corruption of its undemocratic leaders, is now a net importer of food, no longer able to feed itself and with a decreasing range of over priced goods of little use to the rest of the world to sell with which to counter the net financial drain of endless imports.
British Politicians with pens and treachery, in pursuit
of their own agenda and greed, have done more
damage to the liberty, freedoms, rights and democracy
of the British peoples than any army in over 1,000 years.
The disastrous effects of British politicians selling Britain
into the thrall of foreign rule by the EU for their own
personal rewards has damaged the well-being of Britain
more than the armies of Hitler
and the Franco – German – Italian axis of 1939 – 1945.
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Until we gain our liberty, restore our sovereignty, repatriate our democracy and reinstate our Justice system and our borders – defended by our Police and Military armed with sustainable and obtainable weaponry:
Treat every election as a referendum.
Don’t waste your vote on a self serving Politician in ANY election until we are liberated from the EU and are a Free Sovereign peoples, with independent control of our own borders, making and managing Law & Justice for our own benefit, in our own elected Westminster Parliament where we can fire our politicians at the ballot box, if they fail to represent OUR best interests.
Make your vote count
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