Archive for the ‘journalism’ Category


A short but vivid recap of Murdoch v The Guardian

September 17, 2011

It’s OK, I don’t think anyone noticed

September 16, 2011

(thanks to these guys)

Update: Fake, I believe. Apparently there’s a few edits doing the rounds of varying degrees of offensiveness).


Evening Herald Still Angry!

January 6, 2011

Ireland’s Evening Herald published a hatchet job by Michael O’Doherty on Arthur and myself over Christmas. O’Doherty singled me out in particular but couldn’t work up the courage to tell his readers the real reason why. Truth is, I called them out for their shoddy journalism earlier in 2010 and he/they didnae like it! Waaaah!

Michael obviously holds a grudge, so you can expect to see my “it was our baby” quote again.  It’s all the ammunition he has (this is the second time he’s trotted it out) and he needs something to write about. That  ‘Model Loses Laptop’ story won’t keep paying off forever, after all.

Anyway, that’s more than enough time spent on the matter. So as to not further bore everyone with this spat, I’ll concede the floor, permanently. Michael, knock yourself out, you’re on your own.


Herald gets it wrong, then gets angry and get it wrong again

September 10, 2010

In a piece about my “setting the record straight” on ‘Father Ted’, Ireland’s fourth-best paper The Herald manages to confuse the issue further by not mentioning the co-writer of ‘Father Ted’, Arthur Mathews, AT ALL. So any Herald reader who was labouring under any misapprehension as to the authorship of the show, now thinks I wrote it on my own.

Fine, no-one ever read the Herald to get a story straight. But instead of admitting they cocked up a very simple job, they’ve gone on the offensive with this, and got it wrong again. I’m not talking about the attempt to make Arthur’s comments on The Rose of Tralee fit Michael O’ Doherty’s narrative, desperate and pathetic though the attempt is. No, it’s this bit…

But when this conversation was recorded in the Herald this week, Linehan became peeved that the photo used was cropped so as to exclude his co-writer Mathews. Perhaps feeling that this is part of a conspiracy to deny the couple recognition, Linehan launched into a Twitter rant…

Whoah, hold it right there, Professor. He wasn’t cropped out of the picture. He wasn’t in the picture. That picture is from the night I won an Emmy for ‘The IT Crowd’.  He was cropped out of the story.  The tiniest bit of research would have told you that picture was taken in 2008, long after my collaboration with Artie ended. Can’t you guys  get anything right? How do you all manage to find the office every day?

The original story is quite something,  Michael, read it again. In a piece about “setting the record straight”, the Woodward to your Bernstein (famous journalists)  managed to  further confuse the issue without ever having to go over the Herald’s four-syllable limit.  I do admit, that takes a special kind of skill–the kind of skill that Herald writers, and only Herald writers, possess.

But at least in this latest piece, you do mention him, so you’ve sort of accidentally set the record straight. Well done! You’ve actually done your job as a journalist! I bet you weren’t expecting that when you woke up this morning!


A quiet week in front of the computer

August 14, 2009


Well… began like this…

…the response was immediate

…I explained myself on the news yesterday…

…woke up today to this..

…to sum up.

This all took less than three days.

Now, what was that about Twitter being ‘inconsequential’ and ‘superficial’? Hmm? HMMMMM?

(A quick correction: for some reason, the text of my Channel 4 interview has me saying “you change the NHS at your peril”, when in fact I said “you attack the NHS at your peril.”)


It’s long past Time’s bedtime

May 29, 2009


Peter Serafinowicz is a great user of  Twitter–he’s currently assembling a YouTube Orchestra made up entirely of musicians he recruited on the site, and his tweets are silly and often hilarious–like this one “Went to the gym this morning. As I left, everyone said I was the best!”.

You realise that’s a gag, right? Course you do. Well, Time magazine didn’t! In fact, they think it’s one of the worst offenders in this piece on arrogant/obnoxious tweeting.  They asked Peter for an response and he wrote an equally funny e-mail ‘explanation’, which they ALSO took at face value! Genius!

(Bonus: here’s how Peter tells it!)


Evening Standard needs to apologise again, already

May 28, 2009


Yesterday, I saw the above advert on the side of a bus, and I had to ask around to make sure I wasn’t hallucinating.

I just want to be absolutely clear here..I’m getting used to being left behind by changes in modern mores–but is this really OK with everyone? We’re all cool with the Standard using this term to describe the recent G20 clashes? Are the police and those who were injured by the police happy to have this image and slogan used? Are Londoners OK with seeing this kind of violence compared to a football match, a match we can all enjoy when it ‘kicks off’ again? (The inference being that it surely will).

But what I really want to know is whether the new editors of the Evening Standard, fresh from a campaign where they (quite rightly) apologised for being shit, are happy to sell newspapers in this way? Even though Ian Tomlinson, one of their own vendors, was fucking KILLED during this trouble? Because if they are, then their apology counts for nothing, as they obviously intend to continue to be a negative, and now inflammatory,  influence on London life.

(Thanks to @badjournalism for reminding me about the Tomlinson connection.)


Fox News, still hilariously evil

May 1, 2009

Jaw-dropping behaviour from The Daily Mail

April 14, 2009


This is incredible. While we await the response of the PCC to our petition protesting the Express/Dunblane scandal that the press won’t cover (STILL not as important to the broadsheets as Sachsgate, apparently), here’s a piece of mindblowing cynicism from the Daily Mail to take up the slack.

Apparently, the Daily Mail in Ireland and the Daily Mail in the UK are currently running seperate campaigns about the HPV Vaccine. Nothing unusual about that, you might think. It’s an important subject and the Daily Mail has a duty to be concerned.   But, y’see, ha, ha, here’s the thing.

The two editions of the paper are running campaigns both for and against the vaccine. That’s right, in Ireland, the newspaper is very firmly for it, but in the UK, on the other hand…. you get stories such as this.

Over to Martin Robbins…

“Are they insane?! They’re printing scare stores about the dangers of the HPV vaccine in one country, while simultaneously campaigning for its introduction in another. It’s so absurdly cynical that I can’t quite form the words to convey just how shocked I am by this. Even by the piss-poor journalistic standards of the Daily Mail, this takes quite some beating.

What this means is that those of us who believed that the Daily Mail had some editorial, ideological stance against certain vaccines (such as MMR) were in fact wrong. The Daily Mail position on vaccines is whatever sells newspapers – and if those positions are completely self-contradictory, or might cause a bit more cancer in the readership, then who cares, as long as the advertisers are happy?

In many ways, this is worse than being anti-vaccine. Anti-vaccinationists may be cranks, but at least they ultimately care about the people affected. The revelation that the Mail is pushing two contradictory positions on a major public health issue on either side of the Irish Sea, proves once and for all that they don’t give a crap about the impact such stories may have on their readers. It’s a whole new level of sick. It’s crossing the line where misguided becomes truly evil.”

As Ben Goldacre, author of ‘Bad Science’ put it, “looks like the reasoning is to attack any government healthcare decision by pretending it’s dangerous.”

Thanks again, unaccountable press!

(Props to all on Twitter who helped with this post.)


Dunblane/Express update

April 2, 2009
Matt Nida on delivering the Express/Dunblane petition.
“On Monday, I delivered the Sunday Express petition to the Press Complaints Commission and the Express Group itself (Downing Street will receive their copy next Thursday). Surprisingly, we received the frostiest reception at the PCC – we were refused entry into their building on “security” grounds (presumably because 250-odd sheets of paper could cause someone a very nasty paper cut), and the security guard who we eventually left the petition with was very insistent that we couldn’t film or photograph the building.

In the PCC’s defence, I received a letter less than 48 hours later acknowledging receipt of the petition and explaining that it has been passed to the person carrying out their investigation into the Sunday Express article. Nevertheless, I continue to be surprised at the barriers the Press Complaints Commission puts up against people who want to, erm, complain about the press.

By contrast, we delivered to the Express without incident, although they have yet to acknowledge receipt. Downing Street next week – let’s see if Gordon’s brave enough to criticise a newspaper!”

…or whether it’s destined to remain the scandal that didn’t happen because it happened to the press.