Correspondence between Village‘s editor and RTÉ’s ad-clearance Department
I hope all is well with you.
Can we please get this running as soon as possible on Radio 1 (I presume is ok!) and what slots are available?
Village magazine, the only Irish-owned journal to publish Catherine Murphy’s Dail Statement despite the legal threat, looks at how the media betrayed democracy and free speech by folding early to Denis O’Brien. In our June issue: Constantin Gurdgiev, Frank Connolly, Mannix Flynn. Referendum post-mortem. Hymn to Broadsheet.ie. RHA’s annual exhibition. VILLAGE IN NEWSAGENTS NOW.
Sent: 08 June 2015 13:14
Subject: Decision Reached:  : Village Magazine
The Clearance Committee have asked for backup to support the claim;
Village magazine, the only Irish-owned journal to publish Catherine Murphy’s Dail Statement despite the legal threat, looks at how the media betrayed democracy and free speech by folding early to Denis O’Brien.
Please ask your client to supply backup to support the claim.
The above shows we were publishing Murphy’s comments made on 28th May while there was a legal threat (to Broadsheet from Frys solicitors for Denis O’Brien but also from the first judgment of Binchy in the High Court). The IT, RTE and the Journal all took the comments down or did not publish them. The SBP, the Mail and the Indo Group did not publish them until after the court case. The Sunday Times, the Guardian, the NYT and we alone among print publications published them while there was a legal threat but the others are foreign owned. Broadsheet is not a journal. Let me know if you need more. Rgds, Michael
The Clearance Committee re-reviewed the attached script in their clearance meeting this morning and would accept the claim on the basis the wording is amended to ‘Village magazine, the only Irish-owned print media to publish Catherine Murphy…..’ so the claim is more accurate. Please send over the amended script for final approval.
From: Editor [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: 09 June 2015 11:15
Subject: Re: Decision Reached:  : Village Magazine
Hi Fiona. Thanks for that. That would not be grammatical. Village is not a media but a medium. No one will know what a print medium is. Hence I said journal which is defined as a magazine or newspaper. What do you think? Rgds. Michael
Thank you for your email. We understand that you are more directly informed regarding the publication of details of the case before the high court we are however concerned that the substance of your ad ‘at how the media betrayed democracy and free speech by folding early to Denis O’Brien’ is not a true reflection of the events. There was in place a high court injunction which prevented some media from publishing details and other media were unclear if they also were affected by that injunction. As soon as the court clarified the situation all the media involved published details.
Your copy attached would need to be amended to reflect the reality of the situation.
This new angle is a shifting of goalposts away from the issue of what a journal is.
In any event it is legally, factually, actually, substantively (any word you want to use) inaccurate to say “there was in place a high court injunction which prevented some media from publishing details and other media were unclear”. The judge stated his order “was not intended, and could not have been intended to” affect proceedings in the Dail. If you check Village’s twitter you will see that we predicted he would say this. The whole point is that most of the other media ludicrously and predictedly misinterpreted the order – choosing to regard themselves as prevented. Village a) did not; b) stated the others were wrong to; and c) uniquely among Irish-owned journals published! Conveying this is the purpose of the ad. The issue relates to democracy and free speech and is not a small one.
The inaccuracy in your premise makes it impossible for me to address the inferences you draw from that inaccuracy!
The Committee remain of their decision that Village Magazine were not the only Irish-owned journal to publish the statement nor does the content tell a true reflection of the events that transpired. It was reasonable, if cautious, for the media to hold off for clarity from the judge and it is our view that the wording used ‘the media betrayed democracy and free speech by folding early to Denis O’Brien’ is not a true reflection of the events.
The attached script will need to be amended. Please resubmit the amended copy to us for approval.
Hi . Here are three random dictionaries which suggest a journal is a newspaper or magazine. There is no evidence, less still have ad-clearance given me any evidence, that the definition of journal extends to an online publication. If you do not feel you are obliged to address the issue in a logical way, and if it is RTE’s official position that unsubstantiated comments (adclearance’s) are as good as substantiated ones (mine) I guess there is no point in continuing the discussion. What do you think? Rgds. Michael
The Committee would agree in there is no point in continuing the discussion as clearly there are disagreements regarding the current wording and unless it is amended the commercial will not be approved for broadcast on RTÉ Radio.
I will close this submission.
*Correspondence edited for length