Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post


4:49 pm - June 23rd 2011

by Unity    


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Kevin Arscott of the ‘Angry Mob‘ blog is a reasonably well-known figure in the British blogosphere, one of several bloggers who specialise in tracking and exposing some of the worst excesses of tabloid and mid-market newspapers.

This morning, a bit of a kerfuffle has broken out on Twitter after Kevin received a nastygram from the Daily Mail’s lawyers threatening him with a libel action if he didn’t remove a two-year old post from his blog.

Kevin took down his post, but it can still be read via Google’s cache.

Its worth reviewing some of the text of the letter that’s been sent to Kevin:

It has come to our client’s attention that a page on the website at http://www.angrymob.uponnothing.co.uk/home/43-somethingmademeangry/805-paul-dacre-must-die is being used to publish material which is seriously abusive and defamatory of Mr Dacre.

We’ll come to this in a minute, but as a matter of opinion I doubt very much that Paul Dacre must be overly concerned about any abusive remarks made by Kevin given his reputation for verbally abusing his employees which, according to the book Flat Earth News, has led to his own staff giving the paper’s daily editorial meeting the name ‘The Vagina Monologues’ as a result of Dacre’s habit of calling everyone a cunt.

Please take this communication as formal notice of this defamatory and abusive publication.

Now a rather important legal point.

When giving a notice preparatory to action in an alleged defamation case, the complainant – in this case Dacre/Daily Mail – is required to specify precisely which statements they consider to be defamatory. A general claim which does not specify which statements they intend to treated as defamatory is just not good enough, not even for an attempted take down notice targeting a hosting provider, which is what this letter appears to be.

Please confirm urgently that the above-mentioned defamatory material will be removed within 3 business days. Otherwise our client will have no option but to include you as a party to the proposed legal proceedings for defamation.

A statement to which the only honest response should be either ‘Bite Me!’ or a citation of Arkell vs Pressdram.

This brings us to the original blog-post.

Yep, Kevin was angered by a fairly standard migrant story which, as matter of opinion, could easily be considered to be racist in its tone and intent but which has been carefully written to sidestep the law as it related to the incitement of racial hatred.

Let’s be clear, our own right-wing tabloid and mid-market press are extremely adept and well-practiced when it come to pushing the racist buttons of their readers without stepping over the line of what is and isn’t deemed to be unlawful in this country, and this particular Mail article is a fair example of the ‘not racist but’ genre of news reporting.

Kevin wrote then:

When you read this Daily Mail headline – and if you dare, the whole article and comments – it is easy to forget that Sue Reid – the author of this disgusting piece of hatred journalism – is actually talking about the lives of sick babies – something supposedly sacred. Here they are described as a ‘strain’ and used as an example of ‘the changing face of Britain’.

Personally I celebrate the fact that ‘The 243 mothers are from 72 different nations. They include Mongolia, the remotest regions of Russia, Japan, Africa, South America, swathes of Asia, Australasia and even Papua New Guinea’. I think it speaks volume about the value that we as a nation place on human life; that we are in the majority a nation who doesn’t worry about the nationality of a child that might die but instead save it – regardless of whether we can wring the money out of the parent.

I just pretend that none of my taxes go to treating a single sick Mail reader. And I consider them all to be sick for wanting to enrage themselves with such hateful bullshit each day, and for treating the lives of a few sick children as a burden which we must get rid off.

What we have here is, on the face of it, an extremely wealthy media organisation trying to bully a lone blogger and his hosting provider just because – two year ago – he said something about a newspaper editor that the editor has taken umbrage with.

What this does, however, neatly illustrate in the context of reforming our libel laws, is that the lack of protection afforded to web hosting companies continues to be the weak link in the chain, one that desperately needs to be addressed.

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About the author
'Unity' is a regular contributor to Liberal Conspiracy. He also blogs at Ministry of Truth.
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Reader comments


material which is seriously abusive and defamatory of Mr Dacre.

There’s certainly some abusive stuff in that piece, but there’s nothing defamatory of Paul Dacre. This is just standard “assault with a blunt instrument, to whit: a lawyer”.

2. the a&e charge nurse

“What this does, however, neatly illustrate in the context of reforming our libel laws, is that the lack of protection afforded to web hosting companies continues to be the weak link in the chain, one that desperately needs to be addressed” – agreed, but this story illustrates for the n’th time that the risk of failure in a legal case has terrifying financial consequences for ordinary people.

I’m sure if Kevin was rich enough to afford the best barristers money could buy he might have given the Mail a run for it’s money – how does the saying go – the jury’s job is to decide who has the best lawyer?

Just as an addendum to this, according to Private Eye, Dacre had a technique he likes to call ‘double-cunting.’ It refers to saying an employee’s name and then calling them a cunt, i.e. saying the word ‘cunt’ twice.

This is hypocrisy in the extreme, and Paul Dacre is a very unpleasant man.

4. Matt Wardman

Admittedly “Paul Dacre must die” is somewhat colourful, but I’d put it firmly in the “vulgar abuse” category, and I’ll stay on topic.

Why are the Daily Mail history-trawling? Wasn’t there one recently where they tried to get a quote of an article on somebody else’s website removed, as the Mail had admitted their piece to be dodgy?

I cannot see how hoping that Paul Dacre dies a slow, painful death and that people will queue up to shit on his grave is in any way defamatory. “Paul Dacre Must Die” is merely a statement of fact.
btw: If you want an example of defamation of character, and worse, look at the Daily Mail coverage of the Joanna Yeates murder.

6. Mr S. Pill

Pft, the clearest reason for the oft-quoted Arkell v Pressdram I’ve seen for a number of years. I’d love to see the Mail attempt a court case. Twunts.

7. Charles 'Charlie' Charles

Isn’t there a one-year statute of limitations of defamation, or did I dream it?

8. So Much For Subtlety

I wonder. Is calling someone a c*nt defamatory? On what possible grounds would you sue? Calling someone a racist, on the other hand, is.

I am mildly interested to see the double standard here. Someone writes that Paul Dacre must die and everyone is justifying them. Someone on the Isle of Man suggests sending someone to whack Richard Murphy and he calls the police. As did Yasmin Alibhai Brown when someone make a joke on Twitter about stoning her. The police investigated that too.

There are greater threats to free speech than a libel suit.

9. Mr S. Pill

“Paul Dacre must die” is a statement of fact – everyone must die inevitably, it’s part of the human (and indeed, anything living) process.

10. Charlieman

@4. Matt Wardman: “Wasn’t there one recently where they tried to get a quote of an article on somebody else’s website removed, as the Mail had admitted their piece to be dodgy?”

My recollection is that the Daily Mail retracted a story in settlement with those who were incorrectly treated in the piece. The Mail then asked bloggers who quoted the original article to retract their pieces too.

Unfortunately the requests were ineptly delivered, drawing further unjustified attention to the innocents. Morally, the Mail were correct to try to remove all instances of the story. But there are ways of asking nicely…

11. Charlieman

In Hollywood, the headline would have been “Paul Dacre Must Diet”.

Ah Ha….. Don’t you just love it when the so called free speech bullshiters get their lawyers in.

Darce says ‘cunt’ a lot, according to his staff. So he must have issues with woman. But you only have to read his piss poor paper to know that.

13. So Much For Subtlety

Yep, Kevin was angered by a fairly standard migrant story which, as matter of opinion, could easily be considered to be racist in its tone and intent but which has been carefully written to sidestep the law as it related to the incitement of racial hatred.

Now here’s an interesting question – is that defamatory? The author has no evidence that it was written carefully to sidestep the law, after all. What possible evidence could there be? He is asserting an opinion – and a highly offensive one at that – as a fact.

Let’s be clear, our own right-wing tabloid and mid-market press are extremely adept and well-practiced when it come to pushing the racist buttons of their readers without stepping over the line of what is and isn’t deemed to be unlawful in this country, and this particular Mail article is a fair example of the ‘not racist but’ genre of news reporting.

I fail to see what is racist about saying the NHS and hence the British tax payer is being forced to pay a fortune for a large number of non-British users. Health tourism is a fact of life. There is no obvious obligation I see for British people to pay for non-British people’s medical expenses.

If the Mail said White South Africans were fine, but their Black fellow citizens were not, yes, you would have a point. But that is not what they said.

14. So Much For Subtlety

12. sally

Darce says ‘cunt’ a lot, according to his staff. So he must have issues with woman. But you only have to read his piss poor paper to know that.

I know better than to reply to sally, but back in the day, Germaine Greer used to say c*nt a lot too. But then I suppose you are right and she probably does have a lot of issues with women.

However Dacre’s paper is aimed squarely at female readers. It is probably the most strongly female in its readership of any British newspaper. I would be surprised if all that many men actually read it – except among those on the Left who want to be shocked.

If he has a problem with women, women must like men who have problems with women. Actually that might explain a lot about modern Britain.

A guy got convicted in Northern Ireland for saying on Facebook that an MP ”should be shot”.
http://sluggerotoole.com/2011/06/22/online-is-no-longer-out-of-sight-and-beyond-the-law/

And in Scotland, they are going to be listening out for ”sectarian songs” at football matches, and trawling through fan websites to see if anyone is making any ”threatening communications”.
http://www.spiked-online.com/index.php/site/article/10627/

Greer was being ironic, and taking back a word that was used by men as an offensive term. Like Blacks who take back the N word.

Darce says it because he is a Misogynist.

17. Charlieman

@14. So Much For Subtlety: “I know better than to reply to sally, but back in the day, Germaine Greer used to say c*nt a lot too.”

Somewhat more than that. The link in the paragraph below does not display a photograph of Greer’s genitalia. However, I suggest that you follow the link no further.

http://chasemeladies.blogspot.com/2005/12/announcement.html

Matt:

I suspect that this was brought on by the Google ranking of Kevin’s post – it was second on a search for Paul Dacre.

More ‘reputation management’ bullshit, I’m afraid.

SMFS @ 13:

If Dacre or the Daily Mail want to make an issue of that argument then my defence would one of ‘honest opinion’ as per Judge LCJ’s ruling in the Simon Singh/BCA case.

“I fail to see what is racist about saying the NHS and hence the British tax payer is being forced to pay a fortune for a large number of non-British users. Health tourism is a fact of life. There is no obvious obligation I see for British people to pay for non-British people’s medical expenses.”

Who says the Mail story relates to health tourism?

What the Mail is relying on is the ‘born overseas’ definition of ‘foreign’ but simply being born overseas does not mean that one is not British either by birth – as is the case with Joanna Lumley – or marriage and/or naturalisation.

I suspect that the overwhelming majority of the mother’s who were born overseas were either naturalised British citizens or were otherwise legally resident in the UK, i.e. taxpayers.

13.
What the Daily Mail reporter, Sue Reid, wrote in 2009:
‘Mapping out the strain on your NHS: 243 sick babies treated in one London hospital ward…. and just 18 mothers come from Britain’

Chelsea & Westminster Hospital statement in 2009:
‘Of the 550 babies admitted to our Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) every year, a very small number of these are overseas patients. In 2009, there have been just two overseas admissions.’

5CC post: http://www.fivechinesecrackers.com/2009/11/disgraceful-fact-free-scaremongering.html

So much for subtlety says
“If the Mail said White South Africans were fine, but their Black fellow citizens were not, yes, you would have a point. But that is not what they said.”

And that’s the point entirely. The Mail would never say that, but they would pander to the paradigm of many of their readers that this is the case.

They may well say something along the lines of

“New figures out today show that the majority of criminals in South Africa are black. Victims of crime from, the mainly white area, of Jo’berg have called for police to carry out more stop and search activities on anyone who looks suspicious in their neighbourhood.”

Which is just a longwinded way of saying what you say they don’t say.

21. So Much For Subtlety

18. Unity

If Dacre or the Daily Mail want to make an issue of that argument then my defence would one of ‘honest opinion’ as per Judge LCJ’s ruling in the Simon Singh/BCA case.

It would be interesting to see.

Who says the Mail story relates to health tourism?

Correct me if I am wrong, but wouldn’t the fact that they said it was suggest it was?

I suspect that the overwhelming majority of the mother’s who were born overseas were either naturalised British citizens or were otherwise legally resident in the UK, i.e. taxpayers.

There may well have been an “immigration out of control” angle as well. As it is. But it is more likely, in my opinion, that racism was not driving this. They simply got some NHS data – which does not record the immigration status of anyone – but does record where they were born. They noticed something they could generate some quick and cheap copy based on those records. And they did. They were not trying to hide anything.

22. So Much For Subtlety

20. Scottie

And that’s the point entirely. The Mail would never say that, but they would pander to the paradigm of many of their readers that this is the case.

Sorry but what paradigm? That’s reality.

Except while most criminals in South Africa are Black, so are most of their victims.

If majority White communities wish to keep their communities safe you really think that random stop and searches are the way to go, as opposed to, say, selecting large groups of young poor males who don’t live in the community? Even if they happen to be Black.

@7

Yes, there is. But I think with online stuff everytime a page is accessed it is essentially ‘re-published’ and the 1 year begins again from that moment.

Typical Tories, love to dish it out but can’t take it.

The Daily Mail supported Hitler and appeasement until the outbreak of the second world war and in the words of Corporal Jones they don’t like it up ‘em.

Can’t see how Dacre is defamed unless perhaps he is immortal. If not, the statement that he must die is no more than an assertion of fact.

26. So Much For Subtlety

24. Pete Lee

The Daily Mail supported Hitler and appeasement until the outbreak of the second world war and in the words of Corporal Jones they don’t like it up ‘em.

So did much of the Hard Left. So what? Not a single person is alive today at the Daily Mail that was even remotely involved in those decisions. I doubt that the owners are the same either. So what’s your point?

And to prove that this is a matter of principle with you, would you care to condemn Zygmunt Bauman who was both a Political Officer in Stalin’s Red Army but also worked for Polish Intelligence rounding up those Poles who continued to object to Stalin’s control over their homeland? You know, the sociologist who has been covered with honours by British academia and which the new Soft Left claims is their role model. He doesn’t even deny it.

No? And yet surely you would agree that suppressing your countrymen in the service of a foreign totalitarian mass murderer in order that genocide can be carried out verges on the socially unacceptable?

25. Jimmy

Can’t see how Dacre is defamed unless perhaps he is immortal. If not, the statement that he must die is no more than an assertion of fact.

Context dear boy, context. If you think that article was merely making a statement about Dacre’s mortality, on a blog entitled “mob violence”, by all means do so. We could do with the laughs.

26 SMFS

I’m all for context. Tell me, in your view, which of the two pieces is more likely actually to incite violence?

Why did he take the blogpost down?

As others have pointed out there was nothing remotely defamatory in it and the DM legal department would quickly have explained that to Dacre.

Kevin’s anger seems a bit contrived if it can’t stand idle threats, I’m afraid.

SMFS:

If you think that article was merely making a statement about Dacre’s mortality, on a blog entitled “mob violence”, by all means do so.

Jeez, are you Ian Hislop’s semi-lobotomised brother?

The name of Kevin’s blog comes from a Kaiser Chiefs song, as in:

We are the angry mob. We read the papers everyday.

Geddit?

It has about as much to do with ‘mob violence’ as the Devil’s Kitchen has to with cooking flame-grilled burgers over the lava flows from Mt Etna.

The relavent point here is that, irrespective of who you, I or any else might think about the attitudes of journalists working for the Daily Mail, Daily Express or The Sun, these newspapers all, to some degree, pander to racist/xenophobic attitudes of at least part of their target audience, if only because it sells newspapers.

This is no different to the situation at the last election with Phil Woolas who, I’m sure, doesn’t consider himself a racist but nevertheless chose to pander to racist elements in his constituency in an effort to damage the reputation of a political opponent and was, quite rightly, disbarred from holding public office as a result.

Frankly, in the extremely unlikely event that I was ever forced to defend my remarks in court, that’s the argument I’d be advancing as a matter of honest opinion and its one that I’d feel confident of standing-up based on the well-documented output of certain newspapers over that last five to ten years.

22. SMFS

The paradigm the Daily Mail encourages is that if you meet a black odds are they are a criminal.

I know very little about South Africa and even less about effective crime prevention, I was trying to demonstrate that without saying “Blacks are bad, whites are good’ you can effectively communicate the impression that ‘Blacks are bad & whites are good’

The fact that you’re arguing in favour of the police rounding up large numbers of poor black people to protect white property based on my completely made up ‘quote’ goes a long way to show this is true.

Why did he take the blogpost down? As others have pointed out there was nothing remotely defamatory in it and the DM legal department would quickly have explained that to Dacre.

Because he uses a UK web host, and one of the more outrageous aspects of English libel law is that it treats web hosts as publishers. If you write something entirely defensible on a UK-hosted blog, and some scumbag sends a legal nastygram to your web host, the web host will tell you to take down whatever’s being complained about, and will terminate your account if you don’t.

32. Tom (iow)

There is clearly no defamation of Dacre personally there, and even the comments about the Mail itself are linked to the author’s opinion on the article it published. Assuming the Mail did publish that article, and the author does hold those opinions, this is very clearly honest (fair) comment.

21.
“They simply got some NHS data.”

But it’s not NHS data.
The board, showing a map of the world, was left in a reception area. Anyone could take a pin from the box and place it wherever they liked.

Because he uses a UK web host, and one of the more outrageous aspects of English libel law is that it treats web hosts as publishers. If you write something entirely defensible on a UK-hosted blog, and some scumbag sends a legal nastygram to your web host, the web host will tell you to take down whatever’s being complained about, and will terminate your account if you don’t.

Which is precisely the reason why I use only US-based webhosts and servers for the Ministry – under US law (s.230 of the Communications Decency Act) webhosts based in, and operating from, the United States cannot be held liable for anything hosted on their servers unless they take an active role in publication.

The sad truth is that a UK webhost that finds itself on the wrong end of a nastygram would incur significant costs simply to obtain basic legal advice on whether the complainant even has an arguable point, let alone any prospect of bringing a case against them. For a company that’s making maybe £100-£200 a year per hosting account, its just not worth going to the cost and effort of trying to stand up for an individual customer as so, if push comes to shove, its the customer who gets shoved.

On the subject of ‘NHS data’, the neonatal ICU at Chelsea and Westminster takes around 500-550 cases a year in the most ethnically diverse city in the UK and the figure of 234 mothers born overseas was accumulated over the course of four years.

Even without trying to distinguish between citizens and non-citizens in that group, that indicates that only around 10-11% of admissions to the ICU over that time were babies born to mothers who had been born overseas.

The most recent ONS estimates for the ‘foreign-born’ population of the UK (2009/10) put the percentage figure at around 11.4%, remembering that that figure will include the offspring of British ex-pats in addition to other migrants.

In any case, birth rates really don’t tell us much about long-term changes in demographic trends.

Migrant populations always tend to grow faster than the ‘native’ population when you look at the more recent arrivals simply because the majority of migrants tend to be in their 20s and 30s. If you look at population growth in BME communities from the early post-war migrations of the 40s, 50s and 60s, i.e. from the Caribbean and India, you’ll find that these communities are now growing at or around the same rate as the White British population, in part because birth rates have fallen in those communities but also because death rates in those communities have increased significantly over time as their population has aged.

36. the a&e charge nurse

[34] “The sad truth is that a UK webhost that finds itself on the wrong end of a nastygram would incur significant costs simply to obtain basic legal advice on whether the complainant even has an arguable point, let alone any prospect of bringing a case against them” – yes, the little man is screwed by the cost of the law.

Not for nothing is London known as the libel capitol of the world – “see you in court” may be the most expensive words you ever hear?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T5su8am0b58&feature=related

37. So Much For Subtlety

27. Jimmy

I’m all for context. Tell me, in your view, which of the two pieces is more likely actually to incite violence?

Per reader? I don’t think either is myself.

29. Unity

Jeez, are you Ian Hislop’s semi-lobotomised brother?

Actually that would be kind of fun.

It has about as much to do with ‘mob violence’ as the Devil’s Kitchen has to with cooking flame-grilled burgers over the lava flows from Mt Etna.

I am a little disappointed to hear that about DK. However you miss the point. Do you really want to claim that the Dacre must die thing was just a meditation on Dacre’s mortality?

The relavent point here is that, irrespective of who you, I or any else might think about the attitudes of journalists working for the Daily Mail, Daily Express or The Sun, these newspapers all, to some degree, pander to racist/xenophobic attitudes of at least part of their target audience, if only because it sells newspapers.

I am sure they do what sells newspapers. The problem with the Left is its tendency to witch hunt. So your opinion that they do so is meaningless. You would think so either way. It is the standard smear. It merely indicates what you think about most British people, and very little about those newspapers.

Frankly, in the extremely unlikely event that I was ever forced to defend my remarks in court, that’s the argument I’d be advancing as a matter of honest opinion and its one that I’d feel confident of standing-up based on the well-documented output of certain newspapers over that last five to ten years.

An output that has somehow managed to elude the British legal system despite such views being doubly prohibited for newspapers.

But I am sure you’re sure. That’s kind of the problem too innit?

30. Scottie

The paradigm the Daily Mail encourages is that if you meet a black odds are they are a criminal.

Well no, the paradigm much of the Left encourages is that their enemies are irredeemably evil and should be in camps. So rather than deal with what most of their readers think, you simply remove them from the range of views you deem acceptable and hence worth of comment. It saves you having to actually engage with their arguments.

The fact that you’re arguing in favour of the police rounding up large numbers of poor black people to protect white property based on my completely made up ‘quote’ goes a long way to show this is true.

Except I am not. Again with the totalitarian mindset.

38. Maltese Cross

Can’t we just say that Dacre defines the word c*nt and leave it at that.

39. Chaise Guevara

@ SMFS

“Well no, the paradigm much of the Left encourages is that their enemies are irredeemably evil and should be in camps.”

Your habit of demonising the left by tarring large parts of it with the sins of the crazy minority is getting tiresome. So: please define what you mean by “much of” in the statement above, and provide evidence for the claim.

I would never wish Paul Dacre dead. But I do wish he’d never been born.

Why is it that every LC post I click on is followed by dozens of comments by “So Much For Subtlety” expressing the most unpleasant and ignorant opinion it is possible to hold on that particular topic, and always at enormous and incoherent length?

SMFS should take a leaf out of Sally’s book – for all her faults, she does at least keep her comments concise.

Yes of course, SMFS, poor ickle Paul Dacre is the innocent victim here, being witch-hunted by the nasty old Left. Never mind that he’s obviously the aggressor, trawling through the archives of blogs and demanding the deletion of criticism of his organ.

And incidentally, please explain to me how “Paul Dacre must die” could possibly be viewed as defamatory? You can’t. You might possibly try to argue that it is incitement to violence, or some such, except that it obviously isn’t. Not even PD is claiming otherwise.

Much as I dislike the Mail (sorry sally, but I think it’s brand of reactionary judging of people makes it the antithesis of right-wing thought) I would humbly suggest that the statement ‘Paul Dacre must die’ would not stand up as a simple reflection of mortality even without context. A statement of mortality would not use a verb with an imperitive element (‘must’) but rather one which acknowledges the inevitable (‘will’ for example. It would also accompany a post that was relevant to the argument…

None of which takes away from the fact that if his newspaper reflects his personality then Paul Dacre is a c**t. Which does not indicate any hatred of females on my part, simply hatred of Paul Dacre (for sally’s benefit I’m reclaiming the use of a perfectly good offensive swearword from the feminists so I can use it alongside dick, cock etc)…

The Wail threatening to sue over a two-year old blog post??? Whay are they doing this now????

They were threatening because when you google Paul Dacre (editor of the Daily Mail) it was the second google result. He was acting to protect his much vaunted reputation as a humanitarian and all round pleasant individual, someone who always has a kind word for his fellow man.

The question for people here is this: do you want freedom of speech or not? I think, sadly most of you don’t, because most of you buy into a list of prohibitions around hate speech and incitement, but such prohibitions harm public discourse and infantilise us all. How about getting rid of all of them, including the libel laws and letting people say just exactly what they mean?

On this last point, I’m sure most people can see that they only work for very rich people, because of the huge costs involved in defending yourself, and because of these laws, if someone is defamed, the assumption will be that it must be true, unless you take legal action, whereas without the libel laws, the onus would be on the accuser to produce credible evidence to back up the accusation, because everyone would know that you could say what you like.

In this case in point, for those of you who wish to fight back, I suggest the way to do so would be via the “I am Sparticus” tactic, perhaps with the ‘Paul Dacre is a c***’.

46. So Much For Subtlety

41. Larry T

Yes of course, SMFS, poor ickle Paul Dacre is the innocent victim here, being witch-hunted by the nasty old Left. Never mind that he’s obviously the aggressor, trawling through the archives of blogs and demanding the deletion of criticism of his organ.

Sorry? He is an aggressor because someone said something that most people seem to think is defamatory? Isn’t that more or less the definition of a victim? He did not defame anyone. He was defamed.

And incidentally, please explain to me how “Paul Dacre must die” could possibly be viewed as defamatory? You can’t.

A good thing I didn’t then innit?

You might possibly try to argue that it is incitement to violence, or some such, except that it obviously isn’t.

Well I am not entirely sure of what the context was, but it looks like a threat to me. It is not obviously not an incitement to violence whatever else it is.

“someone said something that most people seem to think is defamatory”

Eh? You’re the only person who thinks it’s defamatory. Everyone else on this thread, including several professional writers with significant training and experience in how defamation law works, thinks that it isn’t.

48. Canisayuddin

Whether or not the article is defamatory Mr Arscott is clearly a total arsehole and cunt. NOTHING ever justifies wishing a slow and painful detah on another human being. Perhaps Arsehole would enjoy visiting his spiritual home in Iran and stoning someone to death for adultery.

49. Chaise Guevara

“Perhaps Arsehole would enjoy visiting his spiritual home in Iran and stoning someone to death for adultery.”

Perhaps Canisayuddin would enjoy calming down a bit and pondering the difference between a glib (if arsey) statement and the actual behaviour of slaughtering people for breaking sexual taboos. Oh, and if you think someone who spends their time fighting against propaganda, kneejerk conservatism and bigotry has their spiritual home in Iran, you really need to look up Iran’s Wikipedia page sometime. A little knowledge and perspective is a wonderful thing.

37. SMFS

We’re not discussing the left, we’re discussing the Daily Mail.

The only argument in town is; Does the Daily Mail (Telegraph, Times, Express, Sun & Star) simply reflect the views of the public or do they steer them. Do they report the paradigm or do they fix it?

If they report it, why is the support of the Sun etc. so important come election time?


Reactions: Twitter, blogs
  1. Liberal Conspiracy

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  2. Tom Fox

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  3. ndwillis

    RT @libcon: Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK <— Mail in nasty bastards shock

  4. Hannah M

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  5. Dawn Foster

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  6. Andrew Luke

    RT @libcon Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://t.co/ZoqCYpV

  7. ray campbell

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/gYEOWiO via @libcon

  8. Oliver Conner

    RT @libcon: Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  9. darryl1974

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  10. Clay Harris

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  11. Nemesis Republic

    RT @libcon: Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  12. Matt Ellery

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  13. Chris Ward

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  14. Chris Coltrane

    This is insane: the Daily Mail have threatened blogger Angry Mob with libel over a 2-year old post. http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  15. Phil H

    This is insane: the Daily Mail have threatened blogger Angry Mob with libel over a 2-year old post. http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  16. Caer

    This is insane: the Daily Mail have threatened blogger Angry Mob with libel over a 2-year old post. http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  17. Ben Donnelly

    RT @libcon: Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  18. Julia Hines

    This is insane: the Daily Mail have threatened blogger Angry Mob with libel over a 2-year old post. http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  19. Adam

    This is insane: the Daily Mail have threatened blogger Angry Mob with libel over a 2-year old post. http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  20. cutchswife

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/RKwr9n2 via @libcon

  21. alien

    RT @libcon: Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK (via @dawnhfoster ) wow.

  22. Tony Watts

    This is insane: the Daily Mail have threatened blogger Angry Mob with libel over a 2-year old post. http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  23. Joe Evans

    RT @libcon: Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  24. Jon

    RT @libcon: Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK (via @dawnhfoster ) wow.

  25. Craig Shaw

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://bit.ly/kNvZvK

  26. sunny hundal

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  27. Dr Eoin Clarke

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  28. Aaron Stebbings

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  29. Dave Harris

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  30. Graham Linehan

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  31. Mel Gomes

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  32. Anton Mitts

    "Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post" – (http://t.co/0SOKyyG)

  33. Richard Nurse

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  34. Pascal Jacquemain

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  35. Tom Baker

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  36. Anthony Vickers

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  37. David Osler

    RT @libcon: Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://t.co/FIoBbfO

  38. Old Holborn

    RT @libcon: Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://t.co/FIoBbfO

  39. Gareth Arnold

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/j7rBx15 via @libcon

  40. PhoenixDK

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/2sCyGhI via @libcon

  41. sylvian1361

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  42. Phil Chamberlain

    RT @davidosler: RT @libcon: Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://t.co/FIoBbfO

  43. James McGregor

    http://liberalconspiracy.org/2011/06/23/daily-mail-threatens-blogger-with-libel-over-2-year-old-post/

  44. top_tw_news

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  45. The Fat Councillor

    RT @libcon: Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://t.co/FIoBbfO

  46. Jill Hayward

    RT @libcon: Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://t.co/FIoBbfO

  47. Sir Winston

    "Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post" – (http://t.co/0SOKyyG)

  48. Sir Winston

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  49. David Nicol

    @mgshields http://t.co/4AZNDOy

  50. Danny Yee

    Daily Mail tries to silence critic with libel law http://tinyurl.com/5v8zvhj (LibCon)

  51. Scott Forrester

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  52. Solidarity with Kevin Arscott | Malcolm Redfellow’s Home Service

    […] thanks to Liberal Conspiracy, we hear that the Daily Mail has caught up with ”Uponnothing”, a.k.a. Kevin Arscott: […]

  53. Robin Fisher

    RT @chris_coltrane: This is insane: the Daily Mail have threatened blogger Angry Mob with libel over a 2-year old post. http://t.co/yiBOjDa

  54. Keira Evans-Determan

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post (Liberal Conspiracy): Kevin Arscott of the ‘Angry M… http://bit.ly/jsnl7y

  55. richardbrennan

    #aily Mail threatens blogger with #libel over 2-year old post | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/7x3Qrx7 via @libcon

  56. richardbrennan

    #DailyMail threatens blogger with #libel over 2-year old post | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/7x3Qrx7 via @libcon

  57. Tim Ireland

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  58. Adam

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  59. Matt

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  60. punkscience

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  61. Nicolas Redfern

    @LulzSec how about the Daily Mail? http://liberalconspiracy.org/2011/06/23/daily-mail-threatens-blogger-with-libel-over-2-year-old-post/

  62. hengist mcstone

    Daily Mail's lawyers must die ! http://t.co/uZ2NRZt via @libcon

  63. Adam

    http://t.co/t1hK9xY #PaulDacreIsAcunt

  64. nobby-Lobby

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  65. Tweet4Labour

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/7PXuqOK via @libcon

  66. Top Politics Tweets

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  67. michael waterhouse

    Via @sunny_hundal: Daily Mail says blogger @uponnothing libelled its ed Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://t.co/uYNbEf5 #yam #in

  68. Captain Swing

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/2RauNoa

  69. Tony Braisby

    RT @libcon: Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://t.co/m8siLkP

  70. Stephen Coltrane

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  71. Bishop Basher

    Daily Mail says media blogger @uponnothing has libelled Paul Dacre on a post 2-years old http://bit.ly/kNvZvK report by @Unity_MOT

  72. Broken OfBritain

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post | Liberal Conspiracy http://fb.me/TEFr2z5S

  73. cllrdarrenfower

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post – http://tinyurl.com/5v8zvhj

  74. twilight2000

    RT @cllrdarenfowler Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2yr old post http://tinyurl.com/5v8zvhj //& it could happen here next…

  75. Son of Science

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/r8f7a9Y via @libcon

  76. Daniel Pitt

    #DailyFail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post http://t.co/4hxUtkT #DailyHeil #bunchoffesteringscrotalsacks

  77. Tessa McDonald

    Daily Mail threatens blogger with libel over 2-year old post | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/Tpn81Cr via @libcon

  78. New Republic: Loving To Loathe British Libel Law | Get News, Articles and other Informations

    […] strict libel laws can actually encourage shoddy journalism. For one, newspaper editors can threaten their critics in the blogosphere with libel suits, which keeps the carpers at bay. And here’s another, more […]

  79. The_Trellis™

    ahh #Dacre- reminds me of this http://t.co/pciQDHsA #CuntGate





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