Saturday, 3 January 2015

The total ignorance and hypocrisy of the Dail Mail

The Daily Mail has a long history of supporting some rather malevolent causes.  Today their journalistic standards continue within the gutter of hypocritical bile that the seem to fondly dwell within (note this link will not give the Daily Mail any hits if you are concerned about this).

The Mail's story today presents one stilted side of a story, and uses quotes taken without permission and totally out of context from Twitter and a private members forum.  I am not sure how the Mail accessed the comments on this private forum, certainly someone has breached the website's terms and conditions.  There are a number of other problems with the Mail's article and I shall attempt to summarise them below.

Firstly like the Spectator piece defending Mr Meirion Thomas, there is no mention of employment law.  It is interesting to consider that the Mail editorial team allowed Mr Meirion Thomas to be described as working for the 'Royal Marsden', making it clear he was employed by a particular NHS Trust.  It is standard NHS media policy for any doctor who writes as such a Trust employee should run the articles past the Trust media team, it seems clear that Mr Meirion Thomas didn't do this, therefore playing him in a very dubious place in terms of his contract of employment and the law.

Secondly the Mail makes no mention the the baseless evidence free slurs that Mr Meirion Thomas launched at female doctors and General Practitioners in recent articles.  The Mail simply describes his article as a 'comment article criticising...', if the Mail is going to use this angle then many of the quotes taken without permission from Twitter and should simply be called 'social media comments criticising' not 'slurs' and 'ad hominem attacks'.  

Not only does the Mail lazily apply its dubious form of logic in a totally selective fashion, but it then deigns to read into what a random bunch of social media posts mean as an 'overall message', truly bizarre given that the Mail has just cherry picked the most juicy and ignored the bulk of reasonable opinion that exposed Meirion Thomas' articles as evidence free nonsense.  

Certainly I do not defend all the criticism of Mr Meirion Thomas, some of it has been below the belt, however it is also worth remembering that much in his flawed articles was below the belt.  The Mail's utter hypocrisy is staggering, one one hand criticism of Mr Meirion Thomas' writing is lazily labelled 'aggressive' and 'ad hominem', while the evidence free slurs within the original articles is totally ignored and erroneously spun as justified 'criticism'.  Essentially the Mail has trawled the social media and private members fora, and the worst 'ad hominem abuse' it can find is the word 't***', that says it all really.  

In summary the Mail has done a very good job in humiliating itself with the woeful journalism contained within the aforementioned piece and I would like to congratulate them for this spectacular own goal.  I have not abused Mr Meirion Thomas myself, I simply think his evidence free smears against various professionals were unhelpful, harmful and highly ignorant.  I disagree with the referral to the GMC but those who did refer him had a right given that GMC guidance did appear to be breached.  However it is clear that Mr Meirion Thomas has put himself onto some very dodgy ground in terms of employment law, I can't imagine why both the Mail and Spectator have totally ignored this key issue.  Maybe the Mail will now selectively quote my blog or tweets, then accuse me of 'abusing' people, who knows, what I do know is that I will not be silenced by the Mail's biased hypocritical gutter journalism.  

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