Monday, March 09, 2009

Feb 25 ‘Media Critique’: "British Medical Journal Attacks HonestReporting"

The BMJ falsely accuses HonestReporting of attempting to stifle debate and freedom of speech.”

Surely not!

HonestReporting, in denying the charge, neatly demonstrates its methods of doing precisely that.

First, it’s worth remembering that HRs primary weapon is to deluge the offending media outlet with angry emails and the tactic it employs to achieve this is - cultivating outrage.

It’s no mere carelessness, inattention to detail, or stupidity that leads HR to consistently fill it’s "
Media Critiques" with ‘errors’, which range from simple exaggeration to deliberate misrepresentation and outrageous falsehood. A calm considered and accurate assessment of any media fault is hardly going to motivate a large number of people to email a newspaper or media outlet. What fills the inboxes is anger, outrage. And, as has been repeatedly demonstrated here, when there is nothing to be particularly outraged about, HR are happy to facilitate the process by liberal application of dishonesty.

Take the BMJ articles.

HR says,

In its latest edition, the BMJ devotes some five articles (1, 2, 3, 4, 5) reviewing the "perils of criticizing Israel"…..

Well, not 5 exactly. Jonathon Freedland take a broader approach and looks at a number of controversial issues and the extreme reactions they provoke from a noisy minority. One of the 5 has absolutely nothing to do with “
the perils of criticizing Israel”. Just the opposite. It’s an article from a doctor practicing in Israel about his BMJ blog on work in southern Israel.

But, hey, who cares about accuracy when you know that saying all 5 articles are on “
the perils of criticizing Israel” cultivates more outrage and will lead to more emails.

To top it off HR go for some inversion,
Those who accuse the organization of stifling debate are actually the ones seeking to suppress the voices of our readers – the people who express themselves through emails to editors.

Yes, the BMJ criticizing a group that orchestrates an email campaign that leads to people writing abusive and bigoted emails where they demonstrate that they haven’t even the read the BMJ articles they attack, is actually the BMJ suppressing the ‘readers’ of HR.