Monday, 15 September 2014

Hack Attack is great but where credit is due?

Nick Davies's Hack Attack is great but there is an ongoing irritation regarding one of the Guardian’s claims to glory.

On page 189, Davies refers to the case of former News of the World reporter Matt Driscoll who won his case at an employment tribunal in Stratford, East London being awarded £800,000.

"The tribunal found witnesses from the NOW to have been variously unsatisfactory, evasive and dishonest. The Guardian carried a report. The story had a special significance because Coulson was now clearly likely to be working at Downing Street within six months. Not one other national newspaper published a single word about it," writes Davies.

This is correct but it is rather galling that the Guardian keep referring to their reporting of this case as though it was some their initiative. Editor, Alan Rushbridger previously commented in similar fashion when interviewed on Newsnight.

The reality is that I was the reporter at the tribunal who gave the story to the Guardian. I was asked as a freelance to cover the story by Steve Turner of the British Association of Journalists  who were representing Driscoll. I don't believe there were any other journalists present.

I sent the story to the Guardian who ran it as a page lead on page two on 24/11/2009 headlined ”NOW faces £800,000payout in bullying case”– incidentally, without my byline. So well done the Guardian but credit, where credit is due!!

*Independent - Andy McSmith's diary - 16/9/2014

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