Honour

'Girl With A One Track Mind' is an anonymous blog, concerning itself mainly with sex it has recently been turned into a book. The anonymous blogger behind it has since been 'outed' by the Press.

The 'Blogosphere' is built upon a number of things, reputation is one, conversation is another. It is also built on a form of respect, an 'honour amongst thieves' if you will.

I know 'Abby' in 'real life', she is a clever, funny and honest person. For quite some time she has been concerned that her real name would be found out. I know for sure that this outing is not a bid for more publicity.

She trusted in me to uphold the unspoken honour between bloggers. If I'd 'outed' her I would have increased the number of people reading my site, but I wouldn't be able to look myself in the mirror. It is these unspoken rules that help bind us bloggers together into the community that we have. For many of us it would not have even crossed our minds to reveal something about another blogger that wasn't in the public interest.

It appears that the Press have forgotten this honour. There is no 'public interest' in discovering the true identity of an anonymous blogger who happens to write about sex. Yet the Press seem to feel that it is their 'right' in order to sell more newspapers to the important female 18-30 demographic to invade someone's privacy in this manner.

The Press Complaints Commission's Code of Conduct states,

i) Everyone is entitled to respect for his or her private and family life, home, health and correspondence. A publication will be expected to justify intrusions into any individual's private life without consent

I would be interested to see what reason the journalist who wrote this piece about her has to say about the justification of this intrusion.

We bloggers are not special, we have the same expectation of privacy as everyone else in the world, yet it seems that, at least for some journalists, we give up that right when we start writing. We bloggers examine every word on our blogs for their effect on our privacy, we edit what we write to reveal as much, or as little about our true selves as we desire. To start investigating those of us who want our privacy surely needs more of a reason than that of simple titillation.

So it seems ironic that when I am in a newspaper for all the right reasons, another is in the papers for no reason at all.

It is shameful and I hope that the journalist is disciplined for this breach of their code.

14 thoughts on “Honour”

  1. Quite disgraceful isn't it? There's some comment in the article about how readers are expected to believe that it's a factual book – I think if Abby went ahead with any case they'd pursue this line as justification for their intrusion into her life and abuse of her RIGHT to privacy.The information about her family too… it's a sickening use of the media.

  2. One day, soon I hope, the “professional” press, and everyone else, will be committing a felony if they blab for no reason except grabbing for attention. Because that's what it is: a crime.Another point–and maybe I'm reading too much into this–but it seems to me that there are plenty of sites where guys talk about sex, some of it downright criminal stuff. There really might be a public interest in outing some of them. But no. Pick on a woman who has the gall to come out of the cage. Bit of sexism there, methinks.

  3. I've been fuming about this all day. Wanted to go and beat the shit out the reporter areshole. Can't see what possible reason he had; did he hope to get a free blowjob by knowing 'Abbey' or is he jealous because he didn't get a book deal? So he, and the paper he writes for, have spoilt it all for the rest of us; no more One-Track blog (at least for the foreseeable future). Just like some spoilt brat who's taken the ball away coz he doesn't want to play football anymore. I doubt they sold one single extra copy because of this story yet hundreds, if not thousands, of “The Girl” fans have now lost a favourite blog.'Abbey' has my sympathy and full support. Her friends and family are rallying round and I hope her work colleagues give her the respect, and space, she needs. I, for one, hope she's able to return to the blog world soon.

    Good luck 'Abbey'

  4. Thanks for the support Tom.Since that article naming me came out, the tabloid press have been camped outside of my, and my parents home, all day, and also have been approaching friends of mine – even people I haven't seen in over ten years – in the hope of someone digging the dirt on me.It's low-down, nasty stuff, and not an experience that I would wish on anybody else.

  5. Let's get a posse together. Baseball bats and balaclavas supplied – large wooden stick versus skull might knock some reality into them. Would be more then happy to suture up the wounds – without anaesthetic of course.This has only served to confirm my belief that journalists are down there with drug dealers and paedophiles in the cesspool of low-lifes!!

    Can't believe how angry I've got over this!!

  6. Like others, I have tried to keep myself as anonymous as possible, to the extent that I won't post about incidents I've attended in case someone figures out who I am.I've been approached by the media in respect of my blog and I've refused to co-operate, for the very reasons that have been identified in this entry.

    I deal with the media during my working life and I find that the local press are usually keen to keep us onside. They have some loyalty to their community and know that a deliberately bad story will make life difficult for them in the future.

    The national press have no such loyalty. It's dog eat dog. None of them give a stuff about who they step on, because the odds are they'll never have anything to do with that person ever again.

    Abby – there is always the Protection from Harassment Act. If you are down in that there London, why not give Brian a call? He'll shift them off your doorstep, either that or talk them into serialising his gardening stories!!

  7. I know that David Copperfield of The Policeman's Blog might not approve, but please consider making a complaint to the police under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997. If it's good enough for people receiving nuisance texts from their ex-partners I can't see why the behaviour you describe would not be covered.As a copper out in the sticks I have found the Met (I assume you're in London) do sometimes try and get out of recording crimes when not convenient for them to do so, but they are obliged to listen to what you have to say.

    Obviously the wider implications of potentially having a 'journalist' arrested are something that you want to consider, but if individuals are breaking the law then you can call on the police to investigate it.

    The statute itself is here:

    <http://www.opsi.gov.uk/acts/acts1997/97040–a.htm#1>

    Sections 1 and 2 cover 'simple harassment'; but if you feel that in being 'outed' you are under threat of harm or violence then Section 4 might apply.

    I'm not a lawyer, I'm a policeman… but I read your blog, enjoy its honesty and humour, and am as angry and upset as everyone else here at the prurience and hypocrisy of this paper.

    All the best

    Rory

  8. I've not read that blog before, but a quick skim seems to indicate she's just a normal woman who can admit that she has sexual needs and wants just like anyone else. Plenty of the stuff on there I've thought myself – although I've got to admit I wouldn't risk publishing it on the net or putting it in a book ever since aged 21 someone from works head office went “I know you! You're batsgirl!” having seen (amongst others)this photoshopped picture of me – I had thought batsgirl and Mary were very separate.My sympathies to Abby, and I hope everything is resolved.

  9. I'm guessing this is one of the “tabloids” in the uk that has done this. Unfortunately they justify the “public interest” as what will cause them to sell more papers,i.e. “well we ran the story and sold 200,000 more copies, therefore it had to be in the public interest”. It is sickening and sad that they stoop to this level.Hopefully this will all die down when they find someone else to hound and that your career isn't affected by this.

    Dan

  10. there ain't no justice like angry mob justice. I'm with you. And why stop at the Journo – let's cut it off at the head. Anyone know where rupert lives????

  11. AbbyI can't imagine how terrible it must be to have these b*st*rds camping on your doorstep …. but to look on the (slightly) bright side, I'd bever heard of you before. When Tom posted this I checked out your blog, read a few posts and then ordered your book from amazon. We have a lot in common and I know I'm going to enjoy it!

    Remember – your REAL friends won't say a thing.

    Chin up – next week it'll be someone else's turn. Hopefully the worst is over for you already.

  12. It's a sad indicment of our times (and I've not speeled that proper like but you know what I mean!).I agree with you, and sincerely hope that 'Abby' isn't put through the mill too hard for this.

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