Tuesday, 24 July 2012

The Disgraceful Mistreatment of Matt Nixson

In these days of “Trial by Twitter” we have resignedly become accustomed to journalists having their name blackened before they even reach the courts.

And in the case of former Sun features editor Matt Nixson we have seen a thoroughly decent chap brought crashing down to earth without even seeing a police officer.

As Dominic Ponsford’s excellent article ( in the UK Press Gazette recounts, Matt was sacked from his job a year ago following a so-called investigation by News Corp’s Management and Standards Commission (MSC).

TT says “so called” because their corruption allegations were clearly of so little worth that – despite the MSC ringing the Met up virtually every day – the police decided whatever they were alleging wasn’t a criminal matter.

That situation hasn’t changed and, at a time when it seems a journalist has only to respond to an email to have their collar felt, the police say they do not have the slightest interest in Matt.

Questioned by the Press Gazette about this appalling state of affairs, the MSC limply claimed that “negotiations are continuing”. Reliable sources say that is a lie and the two sides haven’t had any dialogue for weeks – with the MSC preferring to allow Matt’s costs to continue to soar in the hope that they will bleed him dry and so break him that way.

Meantime the journalists and bloggers who were so quick to condemn Matt, presumably under the nonsense “no smoke without fire” theory which pervades Twitter, have been snail-like in now offering their support for this particular injustice.

Perhaps if a few of them knew how he had suffered during the last 12 months, at times it is only knowing that he has a young daughter which has kept Matt going, they too would ask @rupertmurdoch and the MSC what the hell is going on.


Monday, 16 July 2012

Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics

Apparently a blogger who has taken exception to TT's anonymity has gone to the trouble of getting a forensic linguist to analyse the tweets against those of another named Twitter account. Suffice to say there are so many holes in the report that one could drive a proverbial bus through them. Why, for example, does the researcher place such emphasis on having analysed 2,000 tweets? This is less than half the number (4,150) which the account has tweeted since its creation some months ago. Thus for said Blogger to conclude that the majority of the tweets point to a certain conclusion is delusional (ie the report doesn't even analyse 50 per cent let alone a majority). In addition the researcher claims to have analysed 600 Tweets from the other Twitter account - yet Twitter shows only 402 in all. One has to also question why the Blogger didn't ask the researchers to look at this blog by way of comparison instead of a medium in which those tweeting repeatedly use the same phrases to get around the limitations of 140 words or less.
 One thing which the said Blogger has consistently failed to produce is what he previously described as "damning" IP evidence that led him to publish his silly claims back in April. One can only draw one conclusion from this: There isn't any.
 Crucially also - as others have pointed out - what is the point of his campaign? How many of those who the Blogger claims were libelled by TT have instituted civil or criminal actions in the light of this alleged outing? The answer: None. What action has Twitter taken against TT? The answer: None.
 Does he really think TT will simply give up because of his silly crusade. Not likely mate.
Update: I see even the Blogger's own pals are pointing out what we all know - that is no-one's interested my friend. You have zero credibility with the police and also any recognised media commentator so your inane bleating is not going to get you anywhere. If you're man enough - which we all know you're not - do something about it other than writing self-pitying little blogs :) read by fewer people than you'll find at a country bus stop.