Tuesday, September 10, 2013

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2nd NUJ Complaint Filed: As Sure As Day Follows Night

Today I received an email from a representative of the NUJ. As sure as night follows day and day follows night, it was one of those Rule 24 complaints that seem to arrive here as frequently as the rain.


Kenny Archer has been nominated as the person to handle the complaint. Now that’s really going to terrify me. I don’t think I have ever met a giant of the stature of Kenny before so I tremble as I write.

Having had the earlier complaint thrown out, the chapel has come back again hoping to have me thrown out of the NUJ. I guess the prospects of that terrify me too.

In true journalistic fashion the underhand attempts at imposing censorship from the obsequious NUJ chapel at the Irish News will be shared with our readers. Letters of complaint will not be allowed to hide behind a veil of secrecy; there will be no hiding place for the Irish News or those who seek to side with its pursuit of censoring voices critical of it. They will not conduct business in kangaroo courts against me.

Below follows the laughable contents of the Irish News chapel's complaint.

Seriously – is this the sum total of the collective intellect at play in the NUJ chapel at the Irish News? Next on their agenda will be a demand for lower wages and a six day week.



Dear Belfast and District Branch/NUJ,

The Irish News chapel wishes to lodge a formal complaint under Rule 24 of the NUJ Rule Book against Anthony McIntyre.

We have nominated myself, Kenny Archer, to handle the complaint.

The chapel believes that Anthony McIntyre is in breach of the NUJ Rule Book, specifically Membership Responsibilities, (b) (i) under which members are expected
“to treat other members of the union and union staff, with consideration and respect and not to take action which threaten their livelihood or working conditions”.
The chapel believes that Mr McIntyre is in breach of his responsibilities and his behaviour has been detrimental to the interest of the union and the profession of journalists.

We have set out the complaint in the attached letter, together with other documentation (as sent previously).

Kenny Archer,
Irish News Chapel FoC.
(30 August 11:35am)



Irish New NUJ Chapel
113-117 Donegall Street
BELFAST
BT1 2GE

Secretary
Belfast and District Branch

19 August 2013

Following a resolution passed at a meeting of members yesterday, the Irish News Chapel wishes to lodge a formal complaint against NUJ member Anthony McIntyre.

The complaint relates to his behaviour, which has been detrimental to the interest of the union and the profession of journalist.

Please treat the below as the substance of the complaint.

Mr McIntyre has posted a series of articles on his blog attacking and defaming one of our members, Allison Morris.

He has been doing this in the knowledge that Ms Morris finds such attacks on her character and her professionalism distressing and has made clear that the substance of his assertions are untrue.

In addition to publishing them, he has also urged others to copy the posts – thus ensuring the widest circulation possible - in the full knowledge that they are untrue and vindictive.

No contact has been made by Mr McIntyre with Ms Morris or her editor prior to publication to determine the veracity of what he or others he has published are writing about in such offensive terms.

Mr McIntyre’s continued posts reveal a pattern that illustrates a campaign of harassment against Ms Morris.

They show that he is monitoring her activities, both work-related and non-work related and posting these details publicly, along with incendiary commentary, attacking her professionalism and character.

He has been dismissive of the very real paramilitary threats to her life, which the NUJ itself has accepted as serious and offered support over.

Mr McIntyre's public attacks began when Ms Morris was required carry out an interview as part of her job as a security reporter for the Irish News.

After going through the newspaper’s own editorial procedures the piece was duly published.

Mr McIntyre was not mentioned at any stage in the article, it dealt only with claims made to Ms Morris by the interviewee, who requested the interview.

Since then, Mr McIntyre's attacks on Ms Morris have been unrelenting. She has not responded to Mr McIntyre's tirades, which have increased in vitriol and only ended briefly following the two hearings by the NUJ's Ethics Council/Appeals Tribunal.

In recent weeks they have increased to the point where Ms Morris and her chapel can no longer stand by and see her so defamed and her security continued to be put at risk due to the incitement contained in the posts.

We attach examples from Mr McIntyre's website.

The chapel makes this complaint because Mr McIntyre has been at all times aware of the distress he has caused to Ms Morris. As an NUJ member he is aware of the laws of libel and has deliberately and repeatedly flouted them.

We also object to the use of confidential NUJ proceedings as justification for his actions. We feel in doing this he is bringing the union's procedures and reputation into question.

The unrelenting pattern of his pursuit of Ms Morris, despite the dignified lack of response from her, shows clearly he is motivated by malice and shows no signs of desisting from his campaign.

Members of this chapel feel Mr McIntyre's behaviour has publicly tarnished the reputation of the NUJ, and thus their reputations as working journalists affiliated to said union.

We do not feel he is a proper person to be a member of this union and urge the NUJ to take disciplinary action up to and including expulsion.

Regards,

Irish News NUJ Chapel.


Attachments:

Are You Being Gagged
I Have A Right To Be Angry
What Price Justice
The Weird World of an Irish New Journalist
NUJ Wiki-Dump



26 comments :

marty said...

Oh dear the chapel is annoyed and you know Anthony when the chapel is annoyed the innocent get fucked ,come to think about it the innocent get fucked no matter what mood the chapel is in ..looks like excommunication on the horizon,which a cara is a tad less painful than the rack and burnt at the stake.I somehow dont see you losing to much sleep over this..

AM said...

Marty,

now if ever there was a case for using a pen name it is here. I don't think I have seen such an incompetent composition in a long time. Imagine letting that out in your own name!! He could have at least used the name Pudsy Ryan.

Robert said...

Anthony,

You appear to have crossed 'a red line'. They seem determined to have you sculpting ice any where else than with them in the sahara.
Touching that they have nominated from the canteen staff rather than their journalistic pool to handle the latest complaint all the same.



Tain Bo said...

As Johnny Rotten would sing Pretty Vacant the Irish News by now should be singing along.

Perhaps the hat should be passed around as we would hate to have a second no show it would be heartbreaking knowing her hardship.
Breathe it in as the smell of a stitch up job is wafting through the air.

AM said...

Robert,

as they say in the trade - if you don't have the balls for real journalism, do sports reporting.

Robert said...

Anthony,

The Irish News chapel, as you know, don't like 'sports reporting'.

AM said...

Robert,

some of them like reporting but not as we would understand the term

frankie said...

The NUJ chapel, is that for christian journalists only? When Jewish journalist"s disagree do they go to the rabbi in the NUJ synagogue and make a complaint?

Kev O'Higgins said...

Anthony,

Whilst this awfully drafted garbage could initially be read, if one was of an extremely generous nature, as a laudable effort from the Chapel to defend a fellow pewster; one then thinks why didn't the congregation pass round a collection plate to permit their penurious colleague's attendance at the NUJ hearing initiated by her and supported by them on a previous almost identical complaint? A complaint that resulted in a humiliating rejection on every aspect and a none too thinly failed rebuke to the litigants.

Surely its not a chapel solely populated with poor church mice? Or maybe the church organ grinder is pumping pipes and sending all the wee chapel mice scurrying up his tubes?

michaelhenry said...

" No contact has been made by AM with Ms Morris-[not miss by the way]or her editor prior to publication "

That's strange-from day one you have allowed Allison or her editor to have there full say on the Quill-its them that did not want any contact in the public arena-its them that never allowed your victory at the NUJ to be made public in their Irish news-

BKeane said...

I think in today's world,the main principle of censorship is to silence truth. Maybe it's the truth that is hurting her feelings.

Kev O'Higgins said...

Anthony,

Another aspect that confuses this old Union dog is the seeming lack of knowledge of Union rules from the squeaker in chief of the chapel mice.

A Union will never rule on a dispute between members when there is ongoing legal action on the same issue. This is as a rule explicitly against rules/ethos.

I assume the tier above the chapel will immediately inform the mice that cannot roar how Unions work with their response and recommend the appropriatectrining courses to ensure they don't repeat such abuses of organised labour practice.

Indeed abusing Union processes while seeking legal redress should result in training sessions, rebukes or legitimate counter complaints against those individuals/groupings abusing Union processes as they attempt to have what a fourth/fifth bite of your cherry?

itsjustmacker said...

michaelhenry:

LOL.

Ms. used for a woman whether she is married or not. Often used by a woman who does not want to let people know about her status, or when we do not know. It could be a woman which is in a relationship with a partner , but doesn't want the dhss or housing benefit office, or Tax credits know she is living over the brush , thus losing her benefits. it just means, "miss" all those benefits , will I fcuk. But I agree with your post.

AM said...

Kev,

one reason we fell about laughing when it arrived.

Don't expect the chapel there to know too much about anything. Its aspiration to intellectual greatness is learning to say 'yes Noel' in 12 different languages.

Now that we won't allow them to hide behind a veil of secrecy and place everything in the public domain (what journalism is about, sort of) you can imagine what people are gonna think reading the rubbish submitted as a complaint.

If Kenny had any sense of self worth he would take the Groucho approach and refuse to join any union that would have him as a member.

This is why we as a union rolled over to Leveson

Alfie Gallagher said...

Anthony,

Given the complete lack of foundation to the complaints made by Morris, Doran, et al., I think the course of action followed by both you and Carrie has been a model of restraint. Indeed, going on what I've seen so far, the malicious personal abuse has come only from their side of this argument.

I mean, if what you've written is a pack of lies based of fabricated evidence, why hasn't your picture been splashed across the front page of The Irish News along with a forensic rebuttal of your allegations? If she is telling the truth, why does she need secrecy and solicitors' letters?

Methinks something is rotten in their wee chapel.

Dixie said...

Elvis had a song about this...

Crying in the Chapel.

AM said...

Marty,

cried myself to sleep last night.

Dixie,

Crying rhymes with something else they do in the chapel.

Alfie,

something rotten indeed and it isn't Johhny coz he 'don't care'.

Kev,

some cherries are so designed that biting them breaks your teeth.

'awfully drafted garbage' - which is exactly how it struck me as well. Hopefully they add this latest article in support of the complaint. There are a few more he has not cited but we will remind him.

B Keane,

anything that appeared here in relation to Ms Morris has been sourced and backed up. If she feels it is wrong she has the full right to reply. If we are wrong she would deserve an apology which she would readily get. Up to now it doesn't look remotely as if she was right and she has made no attempt to respond here, preferring to pursue coercion. Calling people at TPQ 'fatty' on a Twitter account hardly qualifies as a response. But as Johnny Rotten says 'we don't care.'

And because we will tear lumps out of Kenny's complaint in our response, his limp intervention will hardly have helped her case either.

Michaelhenry,

the Irish News presumably aided by members of its bovine union did as little as possible to give fair and balanced coverage to my succesful appeal outcome. Fortunately, that has been picked up in many places.


Frankie,

all that religion goes over my head - maybe they are praying for a miracle.

AM said...

itsjustmacker has left a new comment on your post "As Sure As Day Follows Night"

How ironic, yet XXXX

Re The letters from Noel Doran to Anthony, and, Anthony's replies.

Doran's letters are dated
21st/22nd/25th/27th/30th aug 2013 and one on 4th Sep 2013, the last one is dated the same as "Johnsons" letter.

Doran was writing to Anthony Seeking a telephone meeting , which he got, but he continued writing to Anthony seeking further Information/Commitments
RE-Posts being removed.

What is slimy XXXX is Doran knew about the NUJ complaint, because that letter is dated 19th August 2013 which is before he wrote
those letters to Anthony exactly two days before he sent the first one.

Seems he has been Trying to drag more out of the posts for so called evidence. I would say it's time to get to the truth of Morris's Interview with the late Dolours Price , and seek help from the family in writing and
signed by those who were present, that's the only way you will get full (if I may use the word) Satisfaction to bring all this to an end. You can do Anthony and at the same time name and shame Doran and Morris at the same
time as being XXXX

AM said...

Itsjustmacker,

I agree that the tactic was a hardly a noble one. I have grave misgivings about the way Mr Doran has handled this. I am not saying he was lying to me but I do believe his purpose in seeking a phone conversation was to lay the ground for legal coercion.

AM said...

Frankie,

the chapel and the synagogue are for different papers. One is with the Irish News and the other with the Irish Jews!!! Terrible I know.

larry hughes said...

Good programme on BBC2 9pm about the origins of the Irish news.

THE WIPERS TIMES.

Pauline said...

I love your quote and must remember it for the future.

I have been following this situation since Wiki-Dump and have admired your tenacity. I particularly like how you back everything up with fact. After all they just keeping looking more foolish, it would remind you of the story of the monkey with his hand caught in a jar. They need to know when to let go and when in a hole to stop digging!

Kev O'Higgins said...

It's hard to believe this is the publication and congregation that so laudibly gave Newton a writing role when another publication sought to censor his commentary as they found it objectionable. They also have a clear example working alongside them of how censorship and dirty tackles can result in the opposite of the intended affect - a voice that seemed damaged but ultimately became louder as a result of efforts to stifle.

Also hard to believe Squinter came down on the side of TPQ in a tweet on this current attempt to silence and amazingly that tweet was to another that would have this blog silenced - Danny Morrison.

That should give all at the IN something to ponder when even Squinter is part of the right to write camp and they've moved into the vacated tent in the camp of silencing dissent.

Didn't think it possible but this debacle has resulted in me upgrading my opinion of Squinter as I become steadily more incredulous at the tactics of management and staff at the IN a publication I had plenty of time for.

Never thought I would say it but fair fucks to Squinter for taking even a small stand that won't have got him many brownie points from the shinners . Good man - you did the right thing Squinter.

Kev O'Higgins said...

Another thing a recent survey had journalists and lawyers both in the Top Ten careers seen as untrustworthy by the public.

Putting them together you'd get a blackhole for trust. An event horizon from which light cannot escape.

AM said...

Kev,

like or loathe Squinter, and completely independent of any position he adopts on this issue, his column after Frank McGreevy was killed took a lot of courage. I wrote a piece in his defence at the time for Index on Censorship. But it is the obvious thing to do - no writer should face coercion for what they write. A writer who defends themselves with a censor lawyer but can't do so with a pen has run out of ink as a writer in my view.

Kev O'Higgins said...

Anthony,

I remember that article well and how the resort to censorship and enforced contrition moved the focus from an opportunity to refute or argue the merits of its content to increased coverage and ridicule mixed with disbelief that an attempt to stifle rather than engage was taken.

This increasingly seems to be be reflected in this IN case. A simple counterargument and stating of their position would have seen this topic a distant memory.

Journalists resorting to law and Union discipline instead of the tools of their trade - words - is seeing this dispute snowball. The further redress is sought by legal threats and requests for secret Union hearings the more likely this story will spread and generate discussion on censorship and reflections on those seeking to restrict the stating of opinion. The substance of the original material replaced with debate on attempt at stifling opinion.

A right of reply which you've offered would've seen this entire thing a long forgotten exchange of differing views.

Whereas the taking up of the writ over the written is and will continue to cause a growing focus on the actions of those involved which is surely contrary to their best interests? Though its $$ for a lawyer the only possible winner if this hits the courts. The Union route is also a lose/lose - what jornalist wins if their Union becomes a tool of censorship?