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Journalists vs PPRuNe

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Journalists vs PPRuNe

Old 25th Jul 2004, 18:26
  #1 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
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Location: Lincs
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Exclamation Journalists vs PPRuNe

Increasingly it seems, threads are being generated by journalists intent upon digging up a story and the failure to recognise them for what they are demonstrates a certain naiveté from some PPRuNers; look at the ‘Jag Incident’ (Stormshadow2) or ‘Which RAF Stations will Go’ (Styron) threads; both posted as first posts with no profile, obviously fishing and still PPRuNers take the bait.

When Stormshadow2 didn’t get the response he needed he even added ‘There's a story out there that may involve a senior officer flying lower than he should have been and getting caught out’, deliberately and quite cleverly designed to inflame prejudice and loosen tongues. It still failed to light up some people’s CWP - come on guys and girls, let’s wake up to the threat!

I am well aware of the inherent, unregulated nature of PPRuNe but find it intuitively distasteful that SOME journalists resort to such devious means - perhaps I’m now being naive! Styron’s thread is innocuous enough – why not just post ‘Hi, I’m a journalist researching this story, please help me get the facts straight so I can support the Armed Forces accurately.’ For contrast, Jackonicko makes no attempt to hide his credentials and, most refreshingly, Mike Smith (Daily Telegraph Defence Correspondent) appears in the ‘Defence Cuts’ thread under his own name.

Although now swamped with non-mil/non-aviators, PPRuNe is still great for banter, unloading some frustration, getting an early heads up on issues or sounding out kindred spirits. I do NOT think that it should only be for airing the party line – indeed, I think it serves a useful purpose in highlighting issues that matter to the boys/girls at the coalface. However, neither do I think, quoting Jackonicko, that issues that are just ‘embarrassing, politically embarrassing or might damage careers’ should be ‘fair game’, with caution reserved only for information that could ‘cost lives, or if it might help an enemy defend himself’.

The airing of dirty laundry in this forum is usually inappropriate – my opinion. The willingness of some PPRuNers to highlight the specific mistakes of others, be they of judgement or circumstance, and invite uninformed comment/judgement is selfish and unprofessional. Our professional environment cannot be entirely understood by those that have not been there/done it – it also happens to be an environment that routinely puts young men and women into difficult circumstances. We are all prone to mistakes and revelling in someone else’s misfortune is extreme conceit. Mistakes will be made and SHOULD be discussed – objectively, positively and PROFESSIONALLY. That is not always the case here.

My point? Most of us are pretty proud of our Service, profession and the job we do – irrespective of, and not to belittle, some well-grounded frustrations. Let’s not compromise our broader view by stupidly providing ammunition to deceitful journalists that are determined to show us in a poor light, irrespective of the facts.

PPRuNers (Mil) - you spot a baited hook, let’s tag it for the not-so-insightful and let it stale out.

Professional journalists – show your colours and, within the bounds of professional judgement and, obviously, genuine security considerations, you may get a surprisingly helpful response.
Captain Kirk is offline  
Old 25th Jul 2004, 18:36
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Ah, but how do we know you aren't a journo?

And while I pretend to be a journo I'm actually Jock Stirrup, canvassing opinion........

I don't think Styron writes well enough to be a journo, in any case.
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Old 25th Jul 2004, 19:04
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Captain Kirk - you seem to be advocating some kind of censorship whereby only "non embarrassing" issues are commented on. Surely I must be wrong. We do still have a modicum of free speech in this country dont we? As for journalists in disguise how do we know what you do? Your profile is distinctly obscure. Maybe Jackonicko is really the CDS and is just trying to find his enemies within!!! Censor him?
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Old 25th Jul 2004, 19:33
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Just to be clear - I am personally not in favour of a moderator or formal censorship. I am, after all (unless you subscribe to Jacko's conspiracy theory), paid to defend free speech.

I would, however, like to see the same judgement that we use in the workplace applied in cyberspace.

Oh, and I don't like sneaky journalists.

Or politicians.


Knock It Off - just Beam Me Up.

Captain Kirk is offline  
Old 25th Jul 2004, 20:02
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Rater than worry about whether a thread is started by Journos searching for a story, or whether the plods are going to come knocking on your door for what you've written, why don't we resurrect the "Good Morning CAS" thread? Simply air your grievances in the knowledge that CAS will be reading edited highlights as he tucks into his Cornflakes. It was good fun at the time, back when morale was almost as bad as it is now.
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Old 25th Jul 2004, 20:25
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out of curiosity, what is the most senior rank you have heard of to admit to viewing / using this site?
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Old 25th Jul 2004, 20:35
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Most Senior Ppruner...

I know of a 3* who read through one of the threads and put names, faces, dates and his own version of some of the events together. All a long way back, mind you, when he was a mere squadron shag.
johnfairr is offline  
Old 25th Jul 2004, 20:47
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Don't get so paranoid Capt Kirk, as I am honestly not a journalist
and was just curious as to peoples views on which RAF bases would close.

I am not a practicuarly gifted writer and do not wish to offend any one.

I currently live in Northumberland England and was just curious to which bases will close as it seems to me that if the RAF continue the way they are going there will be no bases left in the North of England, once Boulmer is closed, the nearest RAF base to me will be Leeming which itself faces an uncertain future with the withdrawl of the Tornado squadrons.

If Leeming went there would hardly be an RAF base left in the entire North of England, which is a frightening thought.

I fully support many of the viewpoints aired on this thread, including the one about my writing not been up to the standard of a journalist (have you ever read the Sun).

Anyway I would be interested in any one's thoughts on my Which Bases Will Close Thread.

Besides if I was a journalist I would not be interested in covering damn RAF bases I would be covering sordid sex stories for The News of the World, well enough said "we made our execuses and left".
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Old 25th Jul 2004, 21:30
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Sneaky Journalists

Captain Kirk,

Well said, even if you are a journo, which I doubt.


I agree that Styron is unlikely to be a journo: he cannot write! But, alas, most tabloid hacks cannot write anyway!!

Also, to lessen the affect on of what might be, for me, a major bout of depression, please, please, confirm that you are not Jock Stirrup! I have been on the receiving end of a couple of his so-called briefings: what a nice but, ultimately, uncharismatic bore! Surely we can come up with someone as CAS who is not so stunningly unprepossessing: John Walker perhaps?

Our last effective CAS was Peter Harding who, in addition to having some charisma, was a highly effective communicator, played a great piano (Scott Joplin being a speciality) and was capable of a bit of insidious leg-over as was testified to by a so-called lady (Buck) who appeared highly qualified to know about such things.

PS: If you are Jock, I withdraw none of the above!
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Old 25th Jul 2004, 23:36
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Oh alright, I'm Geoff Hoon pretending to be Jock pretending to be Jacko....

Less depressed now?
Jackonicko is offline  
Old 26th Jul 2004, 06:34
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Hand up

Ok, I'll admit it, I'm in the media...not that I have been fishing for anything anyway.

Although I hate the word 'Journalist' , especially as I have no formal training or qualifications, I do write for Australian Aviation magazine as a freelance feature writer and I write the bulk of the military newsdesk in the magazine.

HOWEVER, I am first and foremost an aviation enthusiast who appreciates that somethimes it is not in anyone's interest to break stories which will achieve nothing but embarrass someone unnecessarily.

So, if you see me hovering, don't worry, I wont be fishing for anything, just enjoying the banter and contributing where I feel is appropriate.


Magoodotcom is offline  
Old 26th Jul 2004, 07:24
  #12 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2003
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and I'm really the CAS, and I'll be having a serious talk to you all in my office later!!

No, I'm not actually,
sorry about that - got a bit carried away (too much Grouse me thinks! hik)

Kind regards
The Swinging Monkey
Caruthers, put me to bed there's a good chap
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Old 26th Jul 2004, 08:59
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Hey guys!

sorry about the confused state of this mail, and indeed the subject, but i am honestly out of my depth here.... being a private individual with no military experience (apart from dodging the draft in a country far away...) but with an interest in these matters, i must admit that this thread is somewhat disturbing.

as far as i was concerned, PPRuNe was a forum where RAF types chatted about things and where one could chat along. now all of a sudden, if i'm not leaning out of my nimrod i'm a paid up member of the nuj! are we still welcomed here, or do you lads want to be among yourselves for a bit?
FCK1 is offline  
Old 26th Jul 2004, 09:58
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Ideal world Vs Real world...

Ideal World....

Human Rights convention....

Article 12

No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.

Article 19

Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.

Article 21

Everyone has the right to take part in the government of his country, directly or through freely chosen representatives.

And finally

Article 30
Nothing in this Declaration may be interpreted as implying for any State, group or person any right to engage in any activity or to perform any act aimed at the destruction of any of the rights and freedoms set forth herein.

However, we live in the real world,

ruled by Labour, where unfortunately in the Armed Services we have to get on the bus or get run over. Sometimes, however how hard, we have to bite our tongues and get on with it, quietly and with dignity; any less and we lower ourselves to the level of those who we currently resent. Difficult, I know, but that is what is expected of us, as professionals.

So lets be a Wee bit careful about what we write, or we may loose the privelege to use this site impartially and without fear of persecution.
Old 26th Jul 2004, 14:58
  #15 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Tir Na n'Og
Posts: 41

Of course aviation enthusiasts are welcome! (Sorry to speak for the masses chaps!)

The original point of this thread was that it is worrying when sneaky journo types cruise our forum and you see yourself quoted the next day under, "A senior military source said...."

Have you ever noticed that everyone is a senior military source? I'd love to see a story that started with,
"A baby Stoker source said, I'm not getting my weekenders coz chief wants me to strip the diesel! mank,mank,mank!"
Leprechaun is offline  
Old 26th Jul 2004, 21:40
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Posts: 1,398

If John Walker had been CAS last week he would now be ex-CAS because I am convinced he would not have accepted the cuts imposed by this stupid government.

Incidentally, he is worth listening to on the Radio 4 Today programme occasionally making a lot of sense about intel matters.
soddim is offline  

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