back to article BBC (sort of) sorry for Grant Shapps Wikipedia smear reportage

The BBC has apologised to MP and former Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps for the way it reported allegations regarding Shapps and Wikipedia, which were based on a single anonymous source. Shapps lost the position of party chairman and left the Cabinet, despite running a successful general election campaign. He is …

  1. CAPS LOCK

    Ooh, a bit of a quandry here...

    Highhanded arrogant lackadaisical BBC versus sleazy MP, Gah, a plague on both their houses, as someone once said.

    1. John Lilburne

      Re: Ooh, a bit of a quandry here...

      You missed out "highhanded arrogant lackadaisical, and sleazy wikipedia". However, I Grant that it couldn't have happened to a nicer fellow than him.

      1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

        1. sabroni Silver badge

          Re: Ooh, a bit of a quandry here...

          Go to the wikipedia edits for his page and read the discussions. Make up your own mind.

        2. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  2. S4qFBxkFFg
    Windows

    Obligatory link to the only* article on El Reg written by Mr. Shapps: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/04/06/tory_tech_savvy/

    * allegedly

  3. Gordon 10 Silver badge

    Not that he probably didn't do something to deserve it

    But how would you feel if you lost your job due to at best sloppy practises and at worse absolute lies on the behalf of 2 media organisations?

    If I had his cash and influence I'd be suing for libel. Especially the been after that mealy mouthed "apology".

    It will be amusing if Shapps ever gets a job in the ministry of fun (culture, media, sport)

    1. sabroni Silver badge

      Re: If I had his cash and influence I'd be suing for libel.

      But he's not. Because he knows if anyone's digs they'll find out he's over firmly denied it?

    2. Cari

      Re: Not that he probably didn't do something to deserve it

      "If I had his cash and influence..."

      I'd be pushing to abolish the license fee and revoke the BBC's privileges. Make a new national broadcaster and actually hold them to decent standards.

    3. Naselus

      Re: Not that he probably didn't do something to deserve it

      "But how would you feel if you lost your job due to at best sloppy practises and at worse absolute lies on the behalf of 2 media organisations?"

      I'd feel pretty hard done by. But then, Shapps might have lost his job not due to the allegations, but rather because he was a politically toxic little shit. He was essentially a laughing stock from the very true prior allegations of sock puppeting online; his various online business interests are extremely close to fraud in most cases; and he himself is pretty damn unpopular in the party.

  4. Steve Crook

    Ahhhh. The Guardian

    The shining example of journalistic probity. Perhaps they were too busy concentrating on their perfectly legal offshore tax avoidance schemes to get around and do their normally rigorous fact checking.

    As for the BBC? It may be that Shapps has the last laugh...

    1. The last doughnut

      Re: Ahhhh. The Guardian

      Yes the Guardian, perhaps one of the last examples of actual journalism anywhere.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Ahhhh. The Guardian

        "Yes the Guardian, perhaps one of the last examples of actual journalism anywhere."

        Have you read the Guardian? I respect the occasional campaigning journalism (e.g. Snowden) but the vast majority of it is opinionated lefties moaning at each other and puff pieces for Apple.

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
          WTF?

          Re: Ahhhh. The Guardian

          "the vast majority of it is opinionated lefties moaning at each other and puff pieces for Apple."

          Hang on! I thought we were discussing the Guardian not the BBC!

      2. ToddR

        Re: Ahhhh. The Guardian

        @thelastdoughnut

        If you really believe that Oh dear.............................

        1. MJI Silver badge

          Re: Ahhhh. The Guardian

          I really hope this is sarcasm!

      3. LucreLout

        Re: Ahhhh. The Guardian

        perhaps one of the last examples of actual journalism

        The Guardian? Owned by the Scott Trust? The trust setup specifically and solely to avoid taxes, yet the rag it supports makes much sound and fury when anyone else has a turn. Oh dear.

        In 2014 they flogged AutoTrader for £600 million and paid exactly £zero in taxes. How? Tax avoidance. Now think back to 2014. The Guardian ran at least one article every month condemning tax avoidance/evasion, and yet their journos didn't think to include their own paymasters in that roster. Could it be that is because they are bought and paid for shills? They pillory Barclays for using the SSE when selling BGI, but use EXACTLY THE SAME loophole to pay no tax themselves with nary a whisper? That cannot be right.

        Perhaps they ought to pay the country the £120 million pounds they owe us from that sale or remain quiet on taxation, no? Just think how many nurses that could have paid for.

        All the rabble rousing they do about venture capitalists, and yet they were in bed with them the whole time they owned half of AutoTrader. Surely the lefties must see that as the rank hypocrisy that it is? That the purchase was conducted in an offshore structure in the Cayman islands of all places, solely to avoid tax, must reveal the true face of the Guardian to their supporters. Presumably its ok for lefties to avoid or evade taxes so long as the rest of us don't?

        Its not even a one off. They have form. Tax paid on the sale of CAP? £Zero, again.

        That they pay more to their CEO than they pay to HMRC really does hammer home the final nail in their coffin. Quality journalism that is not.

        1. sabroni Silver badge

          Re: one of the last examples of actual journalism

          Private Eye FTW.

        2. Cari

          Re: Ahhhh. The Guardian

          "Surely the lefties must see that as the rank hypocrisy that it is?"

          Oh gosh, you must be joking. "it's okay when we do it" afterall...

          1. Hollerith 1

            Re: Ahhhh. The Guardian

            Do you hear any Lefties saying that? I consider myself on the left, but I think the Guardian is hypocritical. If you find someone on the Left excusing the Guardian, please give us the reference.

      4. werdsmith Silver badge

        Re: Ahhhh. The Guardian

        Yes the Guardian, perhaps one of the last examples of actual journalism anywhere.

        LOL!

        It's just another Daily Mail but at the other pole. Almost makes Daily Mail readers seem sane.

        For pure comic appeal, read some Guardian comments. High sanctimony and over-compensatory superciliousness from poor deluded souls.

        1. The last doughnut

          Re: Ahhhh. The Guardian

          You don't see any peado-bait sidebar young hotties on the Grauniad website, do you?

    2. Cari

      Re: Ahhhh. The Guardian

      The Guardian are "legally" avoiding tax? oh please be true.

      I mean, wanking on about how hard the lower classes have it, while doing sod all to actually help them is par for the course with their crowd. But to avoid paying UK taxes that contribute to the benefits pot a lot of people need and rely on, that would be icing on the cake.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I bet it wos that Michael Green wot dun it !

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Never judge a book by it's cover.....

    ...however, he does look a bit of a cock in that picture.

  7. Elmer Phud

    There's a Shapps in the kitchen . . .

    .. what am I gonna do?

    1. Richard Taylor 2

      Re: There's a Shapps in the kitchen . . .

      Get the cat in - or failing that a smart terrier

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    LibDems

    Lib Dems performing a smear campaign - surely not.. #frenchgate

  9. lee harvey osmond

    Michael Green

    Doesn't add up.

    Why would you manufacture a smear about Grant Shapps being a Wikipedophile, when his activities as "Michael Green" are a legitimate stick with which to beat him?

    1. Andrew Orlowski (Written by Reg staff)

      Re: Michael Green

      That's a fascinating concept of justice you have there.

      It's one we abandoned a few hundred years ago, but fascinating nonetheless.

      1. lee harvey osmond

        Re: Michael Green

        I'm not sure I understand your comment Andrew.

        There was an election. In the preceding period, Grant Shapps was Conservative Party chairman. It's not unknown for campaigners for one party or another not to sing the virtues of their own party, but instead to denounce the policies and members of other parties. It's even known for these denunciations to be exaggerations or distortions of the truth. Or even complete fiction. [I'm sure I've covered whatever it was that whatsisface the LibDem campaigner was up to.]

        Then we get to "Michael Green". The Graun also covered that story, pretty thoroughly, and it looks to me as if they didn't go telling porkie pies, because they didn't need to.

        http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/mar/15/grant-shapps-admits-he-had-second-job-as-millioniare-web-marketer-while-mp

        http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/mar/16/revealed-grant-shapps-threat-to-sue-constituent-over-michael-green-post

        ... which brings me back to my original comment "Why would you manufacture a smear about Grant Shapps ..." Why invent some allegation about which the general public doesn't give two hoots and never will, when there are some far more damaging truths readily at hand? If you were a campaigner for some party or other and wanted to convince the general public that the Conservatives were not be trusted because they were a deceitful bunch of shifty crooks, holding Michael Green^WGrant Shapps up as an example would have done just fine.

        Have I missed something?

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Michael Green

          Maybe Andrew took "stick with which to beat him" a bit too literally in terms of forms of justice?

  10. Cari
    Meh

    Must be a day ending in 'y'

    A "rogue" wiki editor abusing their privilege to spread misinformation?

    The guardian colluding to smear someone on "the wrong side of history"?

    The BBC lacking in basic journalistic standards, integrity, and failing to show an ounce of impartiality?

    If we don't have our own JournoList scandal in the UK by the year end, I'll genuinely be surprised.

  11. Graham Marsden
    Holmes

    Hmm...

    ... a piece in El Reg attacking both The Guardian and the BBC,

    I wonder who could have written it...?

    1. codejunky Silver badge

      Re: Hmm...

      Someone outside of those institutions and not related by extreme ideology I bet. Yup.

  12. Chris Evans

    Ahhhh. a 'BBC apology'

    On Newswatch (A 'Points of View' type program specifically for BBC news coverage). They often have Editors or Producers on, who normally defend their actions with excuses, 'we are right' and trite comments, occasionally they give a 'BBC Apology' which like the Shapps letter are so mealy mouthed to be worse than useless to my mind.

    I find Newswatch now so infuriating I can't watch it.

    It reminds me of the big company customer service department standard response of "We are sorry you felt..." which is no apology at all.

    1. Havin_it
      Joke

      Re: Ahhhh. a 'BBC apology'

      >I find Newswatch now so infuriating I can't watch it.

      Try Newswipe instead, as long as you don't mind further lining the pockets of someone who's chivvied nearly as much out of Auntie's and C4's pockets as you have over the years ;)

      Apologies if you're not that Chris Evans. Loved you in Fantastic Four. Captain America, not so much.

  13. AbeSapian

    Sounds Like a Bad Infestation of Fox To Me

    Is the Guardian owned by Rupert Murdoch?

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