Thursday, 17 November 2011

The Leveson Niggle

Some people sure have a strange, flippant way with words...

"Kate McCann felt 'mentally raped' when diary published."

There are dozens of palatable ways to express the angst felt at having your personal diary made public.  Why this demeaning retort, but no response to the previously published extracts in the Portuguese daily Correio de Manha, translated and read by all months earlier?  The McCanns complained only to the News of the World, who made a large apologetic undisclosed payment to the 'fund'.  No such complaints to Correio de Manha?  Maybe the fact that suing the Portuguese media normally results in nothing more than an apology with little or no monetary gain had something to do with it?  You can't pick and choose when you are "mentally raped".

How did Mrs McCann feel when her personal account of the truth - the book, Madeleine, was made public and serialised by the very same news group?  Opening the door on your sex life and dare I say it... page 129 is not a pleasant thing, especially for the reader.  Maybe the large serialisation fee News International forked out made things a little easier on her poor, ravaged mind.

Meanwhile, news is out that Mr McCann is due to give evidence at the Leveson inquiry next week. We'll have to wait to hear how he addresses his complaint about the Press Complaints Commission and how it was "hopelessly inadequate" in helping his family fend off media intrusion. Isn't this biting the hand that feeds... by early May it was too late to lock that stable door - the McCanns themselves had romanced the press with their own whirlwind of requests, demands and titillations.  So, just why are the McCanns core participants in the Leveson inquiry?  By Clarence Mitchell's admission, they weren't hacked.  Or were they?  They complain about the press, yet courted and invited the media into their lives from day one.  Are they just jumping on yet another bandwagon, big risk if they are.

Without a shadow of a doubt, this case is a matter of public interest. People have the right to news... after all, the McCanns' private company has, and still is accepting public donations.

Below are a small selection of staged photographs for the press, there are many, many more available for all to see in the public domain.  Mrs McCann writes about such occasions in her book and judging by these pics, a good time was had by all.  I don't see any arms being twisted or physical force being applied in an attempt to get the right pose.  And I certainly don't see anyone trying to fend off any media intrusion.  I do hear an echoing kerching though.

Just too bizarre for words...

Can't have David Hughes spoiling that pic...

Oh how lovely...

and perhaps the most poignant of them all...
We conclude that the applicants voluntarily decided to limit their right to the intimacy of private life, certainly envisaging higher values like the discovery of their daughter Madeleine's whereabouts, but on voluntarily limiting that right, they opened the doors for other people to give their opinion about the case, in synchrony with what they were saying, but also possibly in contradiction with their directions, yet always within the bounds of a legitimate and constitutionally consecrated right to opinion and freedom of expression of thought. 

In the same way concerning the applicants' right to image and a good name : upon placing the case in the public square and giving it worldwide notoriety, the applicants opened all doors to all opinions, even those that are adversarial to them.
Lisbon Appeal Court Decision
14 October 2010
The Appellate Court Judges,
Francisco Bruto da Costa
Catarina Arelo Manso
Antonio Valente

Please click to view the full translated appeal decision on Joana Morais' blog.

The Leveson inquiry can be followed on the Guardian website, with detailed information and links.  General enquiries or information can be mailed to


  1. It's so hard to imagine that this couple are missing their daughter Madeleine when you see these photo's.Most parents can put on a painted smile for their children when they are around if tragedy strikes in order to protect them from hurting but to look so happy when they're not especially in public just doesn't seem natural.K Mccann's choice of words are often very dramatic and unsettling not at all natural for a mother especially page 29 of her own book ,the very book she hopes Madeleine will read!Imo the content of that book is not at all suitable for an 8 year old to read,it's very graphic and disturbing in parts and extremely disrespectful towards other people who have tried to help find Madeleine in others,through her own words and actions this woman is a very bad role model for any child! MMM you've hit the nail on the head for so many things in your blog,things that I hope get looked at a lot more closely during this inquiry and hopefully it'll bring justice for Madeleine a little bit closer.

  2. Having followed the case from the begining. It is very difficult to reconcile the twin standards of mass media intrusion, after all Sky was informed within hours of Madeleine's disappearance, bla bla bla

    But the government well aware of the NEEDS of the McCanns yet alone their demands, sent PR & Media experts along with those provided by Mark Warner, hardly what you would call green & homealone. Can't think of one other Brit where this has happened.

    So from the start the McCanns were fully supported both by the Mark Warner Holiday groups experts to the Tax-payers\British governments Clarence Mitchell and teams from the embassy. Then have then had sufficient funds to provide salaries for other PR experts and eventually Clarence Mitchell (or funded by others)

    But how can you protect people from themselves. Which bit of a private life and exposing one's ''fucking tossers'' moments, whilst a police force is trying to interview you, do we really want to know.

    Yes the McCanns LOST Madeleine, (whichever way you wish to read this) and everything has been done to assist from the Man in the street, to yet another bash on the tax-payer at £3.5m (MET review)

    I hope Madeleine is alive and well, and will soon be returned to the McCanns, since then and only then will they be forced into anonymity in order to give value to the rest of her (Madeleine's)life.

    When the Press & media have danced to the tune of the McCanns, settled out of court various payouts and then paid to serialized the ''raped'' extracts of the diary, do they still expect News International to pay out £millions in the pledged REWARD money?

    Talk about biting the hand that feeds you.

  3. Mentally raped and "genitals torn apart" are of course phrases we'd all expect from the mother of a missing toddler....


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