So, who said British journalists aren’t nuts?

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    11th March 2010

    UPDATE: FOLLOWING MY REFERENCE TO THIS STORY THE NUJ WEBSITE HAS RESPONDED (click here). Also pasted here at foot of this post.

    WHO SAID OUR JOURNALISTS ARE SANE?

    Not guilty, m’Lud. My contention is that, with a few notable exceptions, they need to be buttered crackers to join the nutters & tappers. As evidenced here not so long ago:

    • This one  – the Editor of the Press Gazette (yes, the editor of the Press Gazette!) met his match trying to justify the vilification of Tony Blair. But that’s a brain-power argument. Worse than that – far worse for a journo – he couldn’t spell ‘vilification’ let alone recognise his own bias.  [Clue: it has ONE “l”, Mr Ponsford.]
    • And this BBC radio reporter/journalist who thought that January 29th at Chilcot was “Tony Blair’s TRIAL”. I kid you not!  I was there.  This happened in the office of the Independent’s highly respected journalist who took the call. The respected journalist who just goes to prove that all generalisations are dangerous, even this one. (I had the pleasure of meeting for the first time on the day of Tony Blair’s “TRIAL” the exceptional John Rentoul.)

    My advice to the rest? If you can’t spell it or don’t understand it, don’t write about it. Clearly Blair’s education x 3 has passed many of our journos by.

    This, from Harry’s Place demands your attention before you take any more journalistic opining seriously:

    “Why did  Britian’s largest union of journalists engage a person like [Tony] Gosling to write a handbook on terror reporting?

    Tony Gosling, '9/11 Truther' tells journalists how to report on terror! Is that the truth?

    Here you have a man who creates wild conspiracy theories denying terrorism even exists, and he’s working with associates of known terrorist sympathisers apparently to produce the manual guiding how terror-related issues are reported in the British Press!”

    (More below or from Harry’s Place with comments.)

    This 9/11 Conspiracy/False Flag TROOOOFERS forum is his soapbox.

    And THIS guy is writing a HANDBOOK ON TERROR REPORTING?!?!?!

    Jeez. We’ll have Peter Oborne writing about the angelic side of Tony Blair next!

    Article follows from Brett at Harry’s Place  – with useful links:


    NUJ gets 9/11 nut to write terror manual

    Brett, March 11th 2010, 12:04 pm

    The National Union of Journalists has commissioned a 9/11 ‘Troofer’ to work with an organisation that has partnered with Salafi jihadis to develop a handbook advising its members – the majority of working journalists – on how to report news relating to terrorism.

    According to a story on the Bristol NUJ website, Tony Gosling, has been appointed to the NUJ’s National Ethics Council and has been tasked with developing the guide on reporting on terror published by the NUJ last November in association with “The Campaign Against Criminalising Communities” (CAMPACC), a group with close ties to CagePrisoners.

    CagePrisoners is at the centre of the current Amnesty storm. They support terrorist sympathisers like hate-preachers Abu Qatada and Abu Hamza and convicted terrorists like Sajid Badat who plead guilty to conspiring to place a explosive device on an aircraft.

    Tony Gosling is himself a curious creature. He was thrown out of the Green Party after we at Harry’s Place exposed his antisemitic and homophobic outbursts.

    Worse, Gosling is a 9/11 ‘Troofer’ who runs the biggest UK website for conspiracy nuts. Quite why the NUJ promoted him to their ethics committee after the revelations about his homophobia, antisemitism and his involvement is the “Truth” movement is anyone’s guess.

    Gosling is singularly unsuited for the task. A paranoid delusional, he’s had bizarre Hitchcockian run-ins with the law himself, and has fallen under the spell of another 9/11 Troofer called Webster G Tarpley, who calls himself a “Terrororolgist”. Tarpley churns out books and tours the world insisting that terrorist attacks, including 9/11 and 7/7 are all ”false flag” operations, a view Gosling largely shares.

    Now, I know it is frustrating and slightly maddening to have to ask this, but:

    Why did  Britian’s largest union of journalists engage a person like Gosling to write a handbook on terror reporting?

    Here you have a man who creates wild conspiracy theories denying terrorism even exists, and he’s working with associates of known terrorist sympathisers apparently to produce the manual guiding how terror-related issues are reported in the British Press!

    One article in a Bristol Community Radio newsletter describes Gosling as “a driving force behind new media guidelines designed to ensure high standards when it comes to covering terrorist incidents.”

    How the hell did this happen?

    And how on earth did this bigoted little snot,  with an hallucinogenic take on reality, get appointed to the Ethics Committee of a major media union in the first place?

    It would be a huge relief if the NUJ could tell us that this appointment is just another one of Gosling’s delusions, that the article appeared on their website by some administrative or editorial oversight and that – contrary to indications – sanity is still very much in evidence at the Journalist’s Union.’


    UPDATE: Response to my clickback reference, from Bristol NUJ:

    So, who said British journalists aren’t nuts? « Tony Blair says:
    March 11, 2010 at 5:02 pm

    […] to a story on the Bristol NUJ website, Tony Gosling, has been appointed to the NUJ’s National Ethics […]

    Bristol NUJ responds:

    Tony Gosling is a member of Bristol NUJ. He is a delegate to the union’s Ethics Council, representing New Media members.

    He was not ‘engaged by the NUJ … to write a manual’. He was party to extensive discussions within the Council which led to the development of guidance for journalists covering ‘terrorism’. He was not the author of the guidelines which seek only to ensure that stories are fairly and accurately reported.

    NUJ policy is determined by democratic means, not by the personal views of any one individual.

    My thoughts on the above: does that mean that the ‘manual” or “guidelines” leaflet – whenever and if ever we see it – will not be unduly influenced by an Ethics Council member who happens to be a 9/11 Truther and conspiracy-theorist? A man who (some say) thinks there is no terrorism threat from fundamentalist Islamists and who (it is suggested) has even questioned the existence of Al Qaeda?

    Perhaps the NUJ will let us know when we can browse through their “guidelines”.

    Just for the pursuit of ‘ethical’ journalistic comprehension, you understand.


    UPDATE 15th March, 2010: I added this comment to their page:

    BlairSupporter says: Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    March 15, 2010 at 9:04 pm

    I suppose your explanation above is meant to clarify things. I’m not sure that it does. You must have realised that this is how you put Mr Gosling’s involvement:

    “So, in an initiative started by Tony Gosling, a Bristol member of the NUJ’s national Ethics Council, the union has been working with the Campaign Against Criminalising Communities to discuss omissions and inaccuracies in media coverage of ‘terror incidents’ in order to develop Guidelines To Reporting Terrorism.”

    A hint as to why Harry’s Place, and from there, my blog, got the impression that Mr Gosling was more than just a “party”. As far as many of us are concerened it is the press which are responsible for omissions and inaccuracies in media coverage of terror incidents. (No need for the use of inverted commas, btw. There are such things as terror incidents. They are not “so-called”.)




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    One Response to “So, who said British journalists aren’t nuts?”

    1. It’s sackloth & ashes time, Tony. Then we’ll love you again. Maybe. « Tony Blair Says:

      […] So, who said British journalists aren’t nuts? […]

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