Thursday, 2 August 2012

Editor's Throne


Dear Steve,

I have read and re-read this article several times and I still don’t understand what you are trying to say. As far as I can understand, you are saying that because we know who you are and we “know” your remarks are genuine, then that is Ok because you can defend those comments if called to do so.

Equally, you claim that “we” know who Ivor is, that he is genuine and thus accountable. No, “we” do not know who Ivor is and he goes to great lengths to hide his true identity. Nor do I understand how he is accountable, because as far as I can tell you always respond to any complaints about him with the stock answer “I love freedom of speech”.

However, you then go on to complain about “other faceless contributors” that would never want anyone “including me” to know their identity. Whereas I do agree with you about mad obsessed trolls (See Bucks Freedom Press Blogs “the BFP Zoo” and “Rehab for Keyboard Warriors”), I don’t agree that it is just because they can remain anonymous i.e. they don’t publish their real name. We all know of one particular “contributor” to the Bucks Free Press who has used his real name in the past, but loves to ridicule nearly everyone who crosses his path. Especially women.

It is also because there is no physical contact with the person they are insulting. They never expect to meet them and would probably run a mile if that situation arose. That person who continually insults me if I dare to comment on the Bucks Free Press is so far off the mark it can be quite funny. I am 90% certain he would not speak like that to my face.

The Bucks Free Press asks “Please be fair, courteous and respectful to the views of others so we can build a vibrant community in a safe online environment. You are personal (sic) liable for your comments and action will be taken against anyone who offends, ridicules or posts malicious and damaging views.”

However, as the Editor is so strongly in favour of freedom of speech, this isn’t actually true. Action will only be taken if he considers comments to be obscene or there is a danger of the Bucks Free Press being sued.

So, to get back to what I think was your point. It is fine for you or Ivor to publish your forthright views because you are “accountable”. None of us like ‘trolls’ who think it is their democratic right to be viciously rude to anyone they want. However, you love freedom of speech so you won’t do anything to stop them. You hate getting anonymous letters that you can’t reply to because you always like to respond even though you rarely believe a complaint is justified.



Anonymous said...

Well said Morag.Mr Cohen can give it out but he cannot take it.
A true example of a big fish in a little editorial pond.

Anonymous said...

Dear Morag, I don't understand why you didn't just post the above reply directly within the blog itself.
Everything you have written is perfectly valid.

Edna Welthorpe said...

Yes, Steve Cohen, your remarks are genuine. I am therefore delighted to respond genuinely, as far as a resurrected alter ego of a dead playwright is able to these days (quite well, it turns out, but I agree – there comes a point when one’s accountability and therefore credibility is diffused somewhat by anonymity and ironical comments. I gladly take all that comes with that, which includes the endless vitriol and conspiracy theories of one particular BFP poster).

What I find baffling, and many have found frustrating over the years, is that a blogger like Ivor Bigun is so clearly a sloppy work of fiction that one begins ask the question: ‘Why? What is the point of him?’ He will swing, hilariously, from one unsupported statement to the next, threaded by his morals that are so clearly made up they barely hold up. He invites free speech: ‘What do you think?’ after rarely saying very much that isn’t some sort of innuendo/research pasted from Wikipedia/tall story about a lunchtime amble and loose discussion of other news items. So, like with like, Edna tells him what she thinks! He perpetually, purposefully gets the ‘wrong end of the stick’ to rile people who comment. Personally I find it all too delicious not to reply in a similar vein.

In fact, you could argue that Ivor is a ‘troll’ or a ‘snark’ himself: writing without proof or reason to attack modern life and insult his readers. I’d be very surprised if the author believes half of what s/he writes; ‘he’ just wants to get a response and create controversy for controversy’s sake. Bad journalism. Ivor has learned to write for his readership, too: 'he' now knows how to secure responses from his regular readers. This is an unfortunate move for a ‘free’ press when you consider there must be real opinionated people out there worthy of a blog/column and who actively participate in the community Ivor apparently loves. Of course Ivor is ‘genuine’ – his blogs don’t land from outer space. But what does ‘he’ really thinks about local issues? We’ll never know, because it will always be obfuscated by the author’s amusements.

Morag said...

Thank you for your messages of support. Apologies to whoever commented at 9.42 yesterday - there was a Blogger blip and it has only just shown up.

In answer to your question, I am afraid my confidence has been eroded by continual harassment on the Bucks Free Press. I am unable to post there without receiving abuse. It may seem trivial and mild to anyone reading it but it is like being in a room where you are always shouted down. That was why I created this blog. I am afraid I am not a supporter of Freedom of Speech when it means bullies are allowed to intimidate others (and I am not particularly talking about myself here).

Of course, I wasn't thinking clearly and I have still been criticised on the Bucks Free Press by those who have only read my first blog here. But hey,those in their ivory towers are free to say whatever they want without informing themselves first. They only read or hear what they want to. Freedom of speech, innit?

J B Blackett said...

If he is a fish , it could explain a lot.
Very slippery - wriggles a lot - hides in shady parts , out of the mainstream - gaping mouth that emits no audible intelligible sounds - lives in a totally different environment from other creatures - prefers worms ( as in Ivor Bigot)to more wholesome fare - amiable when things are going swimmingly - heads for the murky depths if disturbed - etc
All piscean characteristics.
Perhaps the scales may fall from his eyes one day.
And it may be that he never even went to shoal.

Lorrainej said...

Your confidence will always be eroded on the BFP, that is their enjoyment. Stay here where you shine, that is our enjoyment.

Morag said...

Yes, JBB. Quite. I can't see the scales falling from his eyes when he has supporters with their own agenda. Especially one who you would think would know better. You know, the one who is always to quick to criticise if she doesn't understand. For someone who is so intelligent one might think she might ask a few questions before wading in.

Morag said...

Thanks Lorraine. It is hard.

J B Blackett said...

Are you talking about Hyacinth Bouquet ? Or Lady Bracknell ? Or Miss Faversham ? Or Cruella de Vil ?
Or imaginary people like Boudicca ? Or Mrs Thatcher ? Or Diane Abbott ? Or Mrs Pol Pot (he was hen-pecked you know).
I can not for the life of me think of to whom you are referring .

Morag said...

You know, the one who sits in judgement of us all, but disguises it with smiley faces and phrases like "with all due respect". The one who never scratches the surface to see what is beneath.

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts."
Bertrand Russell

J B Blackett said...

I can't think of to whom you are referring to, Morag. I don't know any real people like that.
I have come across some self-regarding self-deluded , supercilious , stiff-necked stirrers. But they tend almost invariably to be politicians , religious people or financial people.
It is feasible however that your erstwhile tormentor's origins may be in membership of one of the 3 main offending offensive gangs.
If you are a sensitive thoughtful person , it maybe that the best tactic is to totally ignore the nasty jibes - as a palpably upset reaction is exactly what the agitator is looking for. That's why they come on here, I do think.
Keep Calm and Carry On ! (I wonder who said that)

J B Blackett said...

And dear old Bertie was certain he also was full of doubts - but he tended to keep quiet about them.
As I do.

Morag said...

I have ignored them on the Bucks Free Press JBB. And they don't read my blog, do they? So that's all good.

Demoness the second said...

Hi Morag. I am pretty certain you are talking about me.. although I could be kidding myself.
Can I just say now... and please print this!
I like your blogs - I don't often comment but I do read them.
I just HATE all the back biting that goes with them - not from you to be fair but by others.
The other person who you are upset with is who he is... if you feed him he will bite and he cannot see what the problem is.
I just think it is a real shame you allowed yourself to be drawn in because what you have going is good.
I am convinced that some of your contributors enjoy upsetting people.
The main reason I do not comment is because I really do not want to be drawn into it...
So PLEASE do not think I am against you - or even judging you.
I do wish you luck in what you do and hope there is no bad feeling between us. I also apologise here and now if I have upset you :(
Oh and the first anonymous comment was mine. I forgot to put my name!

Morag said...

Demoness, I accept your apology. But, with all due respect, you have caused me so much upset I need to think long and hard before I reply. I may be a very long time.

Demoness the second said...

That is fair enough. I was very upset by someone on here and actually I do not think I will ever get over it.At a time when I was going through some really stressful stuff in my personal life I did not appreciate my mental state being mocked and questioned on a public forum. It got so bad that in the end I did give up my own blog and then had to put up with the main protagonists gloating. I never received an apology for that.
Anyway - enjoy your blogs - I do read them and will continue to do so. As for L .. as I say,the best way to treat to treat a troll is not to feed him.
Take care.xx

Morag said...

That is precisely the reason why you, of all people, should have understood from the beginning.

You have always made it abundantly clear who it is you are talking about and you have mocked me because we have now put those differences aside.

It is a shame that you can't do the same, instead of assuming she is the same person as she was then. She is not. She is, however, fiercely protective about those she supports. When she tried to support me on the BFP this morning, Ok her choice of words were unfortunate, but you and Alberto were straight back at her. Has ANYONE tackled Lawrence for that unbelievable statement at 12.49 - no, of course not.

For the record, I have ALWAYS published every comment that have been made on here. (apart from spam, of course)

You are right. I do not want to be drawn into this. All I have ever wanted to do was have my say without being abused.

Demoness the second said...

Lawrence left the Bucks Banter board.
Basically for the reasons cited by yourself and Edna. A group of us called him out on it ( all female) and he got very defensive and nasty. Have you not noticed that he rarely, if ever responds to me?

I tend to ignore Lawrence - that is why I do not answer him.
Looking back on some of the comments on here can I stress that I do not have an agenda. I tend to speak first and think later - that is pretty obvious by the fact that I apologise a lot of the time when I invariably get it wrong.
Lorraine if you are reading this... I was very very upset by the whole Ivor thing. You see I am still convinced he is not a real person - well the author is, but I do not believe in the personae. SO I did go too far in my attacks because I did not feel he was real or had those opinions and the Hughenden Park episode was one step too far for me.
Looking back I can see how OTT my reaction was but at the time I had suffered devastating personal loss and was going through another type of grief as well. Yes I did over react. I look at Ivor's blogs now and laugh to myself because ( like you) I can see what he is doing but unlike you I do not think he should be allowed to get away with some of the stuff.
I apologise again for constantly making digs at you Morag - not big and not clever but I was just confused at how you went from being so very very upset at what Lorraine said, to being friends. Pathetic I know, but sometimes I can be.

As for the comments remark. Well the main reason it drives me mad is that you can't get a good discussion going.

Lorrainej said...

I would just like to say, to anybody who is interested. It will be 3 years this Christmas, YES 3 years since I ridiculed Morag. Just over 2 years ago I followed Morag elswhere, and came to see the person she is, I very much liked the person I saw, and still do. However I didn't like the person I had become, and all because of some blog, where people behaved like thugs, and thats what I became.Fortunately, I manage, most of the time to keep away. Ivors blog was always what is was and still is a pastime, thats why I find it so humorous, I think I made this quite clear from when I began posting in October 2009. Some people however, have to try and prove they are better educated, better writers, better at getting an argument across, and some are just plain ugly. I have appologised to Morag, on several occasions, Morag being the better person has accepted that without question. I feel very fortunate to have been able to correspond with Morag, and also very humbled. Thank you Morag

SherlockWho? said...

I don’t know if you are aware, but the secret to Ivor’s true identity is within this blog. As questions were being asked, I posted to this effect on the Bucks Free Press. I gave no further information and yet my comment was deleted. I can no longer log in to the Bucks Free Press. Freedom of Speech? Only when it suits the editor. I wonder why other contributors’ comments remain? Can it be that Ivor/Steve Cohen know that they are wide off the mark?