BY ALEXIA JAMES
An extraordinary turn of events over at Impress – the dud press regulator into whose coffers monies from Max Mosley have been fired.
Yesterday’s Press Gazette has the story of how Impress has ordered the conspiracy website Byline to cough up £2,500 in libel damages to the trained and professional journo, Mr Dennis Rice. Mr Rice is a former investigations editor of the Mail on Sunday who currently works as a freelance TV producer and PR consultant. He complained over two twitter messages posted by Byline.
The Press Gazette’s Dominic Ponsford wrote yesterday (snippets):
“The arbitration arm of press regulator Impress has concluded its first complaint and ordered website Byline to pay £2,500 in libel damages to freelance journalist Dennis Rice.
Under the Royal Charter, Impress must offer claimants a free libel complaints arbitration scheme. Rice opted to go to arbitration rather than have his case decided by the Impress complaints committee.
Byline sent the tweets in question as part of its investigation into the use of private detective Steve Whittamore by the Daily Mail and other titles and into the illegal “blagging” of private information in the mid 2000s.
It found that £2,500 was reasonable compensation for Rice and directed that Byline Media shall not republish the information.”
Dennis Rice had claimed that the two tweets were possibly seen by 54,000 people on Twitter.
Here are the two tweets in question:
Let’s be clear. When you’re a celebrity and you are dumb enough to be busted by the free press for doing something gross, you have a choice: either fess up to your depravity or remain bitter and even go so far as to set up a press regulator to thwart the free press.
If you choose the immature, latter course of action and obviously only attract loons and fellow perverts to your cause, do not be surprised at all when the regulator you created collapses as do all buildings built on such hypocritical sand. Eventually authoritarianism always comes knocking for those who shout loudest for it. In this case, Impress has shot itself in the foot while achieving none of its intended objectives.
Well done, Dennis Rice. Legendary work. One must hope that this latest episode of defamation by these halfwit trolls was not too painful or costly.
What a tragic bunch of muppets Byline & Impress look like today!
Tom Watson, Max Mosley, Hugh Grant, Dr Evan Harris, Steve Coogan, Gary Lineker, the Tinfoilers, the Billy-no-mates stalkers, the trainspotters, the anoraks and trolls living with their mamas, the lithium-popping serial bullies – you took one helluva beating! You must be feeling dreadfully hacked off.
Let’s face facts:
Press freedom in the UK will never be thwarted by this bunch of pathetic clowns. Press freedom was one of the freedoms our ancestors fought for against the jack-booted losers. The sooner Impress loses whatever funding it has left, the better for Britain.
Time to jog on, Mr Mosley & Impress. And take your sad bunch of perverts and trolls along with you. Admit it – your personal flaws are greater and grubbier than the flaws of the British press.