UK bloggers can this week sleep a little easier in their beds. The Press Complaints Commission (PCC) has just delivered a first historic ruling in respect of a journalist's blog. However, unofficial private bloggers, no matter how scurrilous, remain safely outside the PCC's remit unless they decide freely to subject themselves …
there are lies, damned lies and then there are statistics...
I have never been known to agree with the odious Mr. Liddle and would gladly smack him in the mouth, but there was one thing that struck me after reading the linked judgement; 58% of robberies and 32% of violent/sexual offences are committed by persons of Black African/Caribbean origin, who according to the ONS, represent just 9.8% of the population of Greater London.
It's nice that we're having this cosy semantic argument about statistics, but I can't be alone in wondering why we're not discussing what looks on the surface a quite alarming set of numbers.
Or that being racist?
Not wanting to split hairs...
Liddle's assertion was not that people of black African/Carribean origin are more likely to commit violent crime, but that the majority of violent crime is committed by people in that demographic.
The fact is that what he said was a lie. The fact that there is a truth that is as bad as the lie doesn't make the lie true!!!
I agree with the first responder to this post; that a truth exists as bad as the lie told doesn't make the lie true
There are more interesting questions waiting to be posed, however. Why do people turn to these kinds of crimes? If it is more prevalent amongst a certain community, or people or a certain origin then what is different in their standard of living that drives them to these crimes? Instead of trying prejudice, increased and forceful policing or other such "sticks," maybe our society should look at what in their lives needs improving (the carrots.)
PCC weak even in its telling off.
"provocative and conducive to discussion," to be read in the same sense as Nigel Farrage claiming he was having a "lively debate" when he was ranting in front of an embarassed audience.
Why on earth...
.. would you want to put Bloggers in a glass of water?
Oh, ah, I see....
EU Commission providing info to bloggers
I am part of the eYouGuide team of the European Commission. While searching for relevant blogs providing useful information to people on their online rights I came across your blog entry concerning bloggers. The answers and info on your subject given on the eYouGuide site might interest you: http://ec.europa.eu/information_society/eyouguide/navigation/index_en.htm
El Reg is not a blog. Online newspaper, tabloid rag, many things. It's not a weblog or online diary.
El Reg may host selected excerpts from blogs; perhaps Mary Jo Foley might post something, or Verity Stob. BOFH could be looked at as a fictional blog. El Reg may even one day employ bloggers of its own. Remember that a blog isn’t an editorial. Even Andrew O’s work isn’t blogging; it’s far closer to writing editorials.
Most of what El Reg does is report on the news. Some times silly and inane (bootnotes,) but most times tech related. It has an informal flair to it that is almost tabloid in nature, but this is far from a blog. It’s a news organisation; simply one that adapted to the internet before most others.
El Reg is not, itself, a blog.
A blog by any other name...
"But a blog is different because it has to be a conversation, otherwise there's no point in having a blog."
No it isn't. Blog - from the original word "Weblog", referring to an online diary or journal. It is not a discussion or conversation arena. A "blog" is a piece of news or information to be read by others. If it's going to be discussed, it becomes a Forum. A blog is roughly the online equivalent to a notice board, and nothing more. If it's being used any other way, it shouldn't be called a blog.
Question about the ruling.
Could this lead to sites like El Reg, which employ a moderated commenting system becoming responsible for the factual accuracy of commenttard posts?
If so, this is a tragedy; it may impinge upon my nefarious plans to create posts with content that Sarah simply *must* comment on. (In order to exploit a bug in El Reg’s CMS which then causes my posts to be automatically “accepted by moderator.”)
Oh yes Sarah, MORE WORK FOR YOU. Wait, now…what….NOT THE FRYING PAN!!!
PCC and comment moderation
Actually, Trevor Pott seems to be on the right lines. There are two aspects to this piece.
The first is the PCC flexing its muscles online in respect of an OFFICIAL blog attached to a well-known publication (the Spectator) which it keeps an eye on in its hard copy incarnation. Its historic, as it is the first ruling in respect of an online opinion - and possibly slightly at odds with last weeks ruling in the Singh case - and most important, it is not just about blogs.
As the PCC statement makes clear (and conversation with the PCC also made clear), they see their remit as intervening in any instance where there is direct editorial control over content. Therefore, although El Reg is not a blog, if our sainted moderatrix let through any and every comment, including racist, sexist, homophobic, etc. the PCC could well decide it needed to have a word.
Today, blogs. Tomorrow, comment.
Quite separate from this is the question of whether they are considering trying to extend their remit to individual (i.e., non-commercial) blogs. Here the message is less clear. They would like to: think they have something to add, but....does anyone imagine that they would have the time to do so if every blogger signed up? And who imagines some of the nationally (in)famous bloggers doing so?
Therefore, extending their remit to cover all online blogs is a wish, a pipe dream by the PCC - and one that seems unlikely ever to come true in any meaningful way.
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