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Media Requests

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MNHQ have commented on this thread.

QuietWhenReading Wed 27-Jan-16 00:09:26

Out of interest do MNHQ brief those wanting to submit media requests.

We've had a couple over the last few days which, by their misjudged tone, were never going to get a positive response on MN.

Altogether too tabloidy and gushing for we vipers. The OP's got alternatively slated or piss taken.

Now while I do think it would have been wise for the requestor to research the site a bit first I wondered if MN gives them any guidelines or just throws them to the wolves.

TeaPleaseLouise Wed 27-Jan-16 11:17:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Scone1nSixtySeconds Wed 27-Jan-16 11:54:06

I just don't understand the deletion of the "push present" thread. The OP was by far the rudest person on the thread. And it was very funny in the manner of threads of old that would twist and deviate and transform into random nuttiness.

I am holding my placard MNHQ

[Down With This Sort Of Thing]

tribpot Wed 27-Jan-16 12:08:28

As I understand it from the rather brusque messages MN posted before the thread was deleted, posters in Media Requests don't pay for the privilege of interacting with MNers, so there may be no opportunity to interact with them before they dive in - unless they post in a section other than Media Requests first and then their post gets moved.

I think a warning would be appropriate - the push present request was by no means the most dreadful that is currently active on Media Requests (I would suggest that honour goes to this horror). However, the OP merely exacerbated the situation by refusing to believe anyone wouldn't find it merely a bit of harmless fun that was in no way aimed at trying to put women down, in a publication famous for its sidebar of shame.

There then followed a series of accusations of 'personal attacks' (isn't that called getting negative feedback in a professional capacity? Most of the comments suggested that the 'newspaper' (I use the term loosely) that she writes for promotes hate and that she writes vile articles in keeping with its philosophy) and the fact the OP herself PMed and posted personal attacks appears to have gone unnoticed, despite being reported. On that basis, I would also like to see a separate category of account for journalists, which would disable the PM facility.

Overall I think MN should do more to set expectations for those using Media Requests. If you post a request we think is dreadful, we will say so. Unless MN feels that this constitutes a personal attack, in which case they need to rethink their entire Reviews part of the website as well.

CottonFrock Wed 27-Jan-16 12:38:14

I am deeply unimpressed with the deletion of that thread. If MNHQ allows media requests, said journalists need to do their research. It would have taken that journalist five minutes to get a sense of the flavour of the boards here, and to reword her post in less reactionary terms, which would have got an entirely different response. And the responses were largely coloured by this journalist's unprofessional aggressiveness, rude (and, I believed, not allowed?) use of pms to harangue, and rudeness at people legitimately querying her sexist wording and the sexist assumptions of the 'story'.

In fact, she got a great, wryly comic, real 'story', which was considerably more interesting than the stupid, sexist-materialistic one she came looking for - which was more than she deserved. To then go whinging to MnHQ and Twitter about the 'abuse' she got suggests someone who isn't regularly challenged for the reactionary nonsense she writes in a publication which regularly hits new lows in its media depiction of women as vacuous 'celebs' shamed by cellulite/'flaunting their curves', vacuous recipients of 'push presents', or cartoonishly feckless, ASBO-bearing teenage mothers of 12 who somehow buy giant TVs and Caribbean cruises on benefits.

She is a public figure, not just another poster on Mn looking for advice or support, for all her doe-eyed, disingenuous pleading about being a 'fellow-mum'. Her article on 'exercise in pregnancy' was one of the more disturbing things I have read recently - woman-hating, body-fascist, basing female self-esteem on thinness, and full of contempt for the overweight. It is a kick in the teeth for all the values for which I thought Mn stood - tolerance, mutual support, inclusiveness, the challenging of limiting female stereotypes.

Is MNHQ really OK with appearing to validate the unprofessional and aggressive behaviour of an under-prepared tabloid journalist over the legitimate expression of their own members opinions on a frankly sexist 'story'????

If so, that is a sad look out.

CottonFrock Wed 27-Jan-16 12:39:40

And what tribpot said.

IonaMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 27-Jan-16 17:19:02

Afternoon all!

There are some interesting ideas here and we're going to talk to our Press team about how we could better word the header in Media Requests. We'd be interested to hear any ideas on what you think it might be useful to include for journos wanting to post in Media Requests.

As for that specific thread, we do understand why people were cross about the deletion, and we agree that journalists posting on that board should probably be prepared to not be met with a 100% positive response at all times, and to take on board some of the feedback from posters. We had no problem at all with much of the 'robust' feedback the journalist got, but there were also a good number of posts that totally busted Talk Guidelines and were just really personal and unnecessary. When they stray into mentioning taking an OP outside and shooting them - even in jest - we think that's probably overstepping the mark - we hope you agree! And there were a few of those sorts of posts that we felt just weren't what Mumsnet is about, regardless of whether you're here as a parent or professionally, so all in all we felt we had to remove the thread.

Hope that explains things a bit more anyway. Apols for the 'brusque' messages, Tribpot! I must have still had my Matron face on this morning! Hadn't had my fifth coffee at time of posting.

tribpot Wed 27-Jan-16 18:01:25

When they stray into mentioning taking an OP outside and shooting them - even in jest - we think that's probably overstepping the mark - we hope you agree!

That was from one of her supporters, Iona.

Rocky288: Tue 26-Jan-16 21:12:41 Wow get over yourselves. I disagree with the way you are addressing someone so clearly I must be friends or a colleague of hers!! I think push presents are unnecessary and silly but not to the extent that I would set upon someone like this. So she phrased something in a way that was not to your taste - let's take her out and shoot her!!

redshoesblueshoes then responded with what was obvious sarcasm because it involved the biscuit 'what a great idea'.

How carefully do MN read threads before deciding to delete them? I appreciate you can have many to deal with at a given moment but this seemed extremely hasty. A reminder of the Talk guidelines (applied to all posters, has the journalist been warned for her abuse of the PM system?) and some post deletion might have been more warranted.

TooMuchOfEverything Wed 27-Jan-16 18:56:59

My advice to journalists would be; read Mumsnet first and don't act like a knob. Simple really.

redshoeblueshoe Wed 27-Jan-16 19:05:36

I didn't realise it was all my fault.
How come there was no intervention on the thread - about nasty PM's - from the media - which actually breaks MN guidelines.

Maybe the media should not be able to just post, but have it previewed by HQ - as for nasty PM's I'm sure I would have been banned for that.

Has Sadie been banned then for breaking guidelines ?

tribpot Wed 27-Jan-16 19:26:44

I only picked that comment out because Iona mentioned it, redshoe. The journalist was referred to as a bottom feeder by another poster and a parasitic leech by another. However, these were in reference to her unedifying work as a journalist on a dreadful 'newspaper' (along with several critiques of her previous published works, presumably we are allowed to do this? I refer to my previous post in which I asked if negative reviews were to be interpreted as personal attacks in future).

TheGreatSnafu Wed 27-Jan-16 19:45:14

Agree with tibpot and cotton
Very well said.

QuietWhenReading Wed 27-Jan-16 19:54:48

I must admit that my first thought on reading Sadie's 'push present' post was "goodness MN clearly didn't review that".

On the other hand a professional journalist really shouldn't need her homework checked.

I would suggest that Media requestors should take a walk though AIBU (representative of our robust collective nature) and take it into consideration when wording their requests.

MNers are amazing, frequently going far out their way to help and support each other. But they are merciless in the face of appeals to the lowest common denominator and requestors should be prepared for that.

Don't make it too easy for them Iona they are after all getting paid for this stuff, you'd think they'd work a bit harder at it.

Maybe just hand them a copy of the Sadie thread with a note at the bottom saying "take heed".

GeoffreysGoat Wed 27-Jan-16 20:19:37

MN doesn't tolerate disabilist or racist posts. That should apply to misogynistic posts, surely, so maybe this ethos needs to be made a little clearer to those who can't be added to do any research less familiar with the site?

CallieTorres Wed 27-Jan-16 20:22:42

see, now you made me go and look there...

LurcioAgain Wed 27-Jan-16 20:22:52

I was extremely disappointed by the deletion of that thread. As noted the only people stooping to really nasty posts and pms were the op and her twitter friends.o

She posted a badly worded request for misogynistic click bait, then when this was pointed out to her, threw her toys out the pram, at which point posters pointed out that she was being massively unprofessional (which she was). At some point in the course of this she sent abusive pms to other posters on the thread. Frankly, she deserved to have her arse handed to her on a plate.

The press in this country are very lightly regulated (and correctly so - it's a vital part of a fair and open political system - not that the sidebar of shame plays any positive role in our society). But this light regulation means that journalists, short of outright libel, have free rein to write pretty much what they want in a public arena with very little comeback. I'd argue that with power comes responsibility - if you have this uniquely privileged position, yousshould accept that criticism of your views, often very robust criticism, comes as part and parcel of your privileged position.

This isn't the first time a thread like this has been pulled because a tabloid journalist, seeking to exploit and publically shame the gullible, has thrown a hissy fit over being called on it.

I would like a sticky at the top of media requests saying threads will only be pulled for legal reasons, not because OP doesn't like the way it's going. Piblish at your own risk.

CottonFrock Wed 27-Jan-16 20:30:21

Well, journalists could have been directed to the 'LAVISH push present' thread for the good of their health, had it not been deleted. That still seems to me an incredibly ill-judged over-reaction by MNHQ.

Why not the usual MNHQ 'peace and harmony' reminders of the talk guidelines, which were singularly absent? Why not deletions of individual posts if they were felt to contravene talk guidelines, instead of a wholesale deletion of a thread that contained a huge amount of funny, honest actual female experience and a valuable broad-church critique of an offensively sexist OP and the values of the publication for which she writes, made worse by her own subsequent aggressive behaviour, which contravened talk guidelines as much as any poster responding to her?

Instead the aggressively rude journalist and the values of her associated rag - the public face of low-grade misogyny - are apparently vindicated at the expense of actual members of Mn. Basically, MNHQ took the Sidebar of Shame's side over that of its own members.

Let's be very clear about what was being espoused here. This wasn't some random newbie (a 'fellow mum', as she disingenuously characterised herself at one point) who mistook the tone of the place and was savaged. This was a journalist who happily puts her name to wide-circulation writing like this, peddling venomous fat-shaming under the guise of health concern:

Sitting in the waiting room of the antenatal clinic I was aghast at the sight of the women around me. To my left, a lady awaiting a 20-week scan munched her way through an enormous bag of crisps. It was barely 10am.

Another woman had spread a napkin over her expansive thighs and was devouring an oversized 'breakfast muffin'. These, as any self-respecting woman knows, are just calorie-laden cakes masquerading as a healthy meal. This is a ruse that only ever seems to fool the overweight.

All around me I spotted arms, chins, thighs and bottoms. Dimpled, corpulent flesh was everywhere. If it weren't for the pregnancy bumps, this easily could be mistaken for a slimming club meeting. Only at a slimming club, there is a sense of shame, or responsibility and desire to change.

What is MNHQ actually saying when it deletes a thread in which this author's unpleasant story premises are robustly criticised? What values is it upholding? Because they certainly aren't mine, and, judging by the thread, they certainly aren't those of a number of other Mumsnetters.

Rather than asking about guidelines for journalists, I feel members should be asking about what we are actually allowed to say to writers who come on Mn for professional reasons, like Sadie Nicholls. Are we allowed to give negative book reviews? Ask challenging questions of politicians? Query the premises on which government policies are based?

Gunting Wed 27-Jan-16 20:35:52

Cotton very well said.

Also confused and disappointed about that thread getting deleted.

LordOfMisrule Wed 27-Jan-16 20:42:45

I'd expect journalists or the associated PR people to do their own briefing/market research, rather than MN.

coffeeisnectar Wed 27-Jan-16 20:45:41

I made one post on that thread.

I asked her what push present she had got.

I got a rude pm in response.

I think that any journalist wanting to recruit people for stories should have a good read of the site first. Or given advice about the demographic of its users.

But I thought journalists are meant to do research. It's not rocket science.

It's like posting on an anorexic support thread and asking for cake recipes. You just wouldn't.

QuietWhenReading Wed 27-Jan-16 20:47:56

Have MN ever undeleted a thread?

It sounds like there might be a case for it here... As a cautionary tale for unwary lazy journalists if for no other reason.

TheGreatSnafu Wed 27-Jan-16 20:49:00

Exactly cotton

My thoughts exactly. Thank you for posting. Brilliant.

Tiggeryoubastard Wed 27-Jan-16 20:49:29

Frankly, if some bottom feeding parasite is too idle or thick to check where they are paying to do their lazy excise for research then they get all they deserve. If they then show themselves to be even less professional than expected and snippy then again, they get all they deserve. This is a forum. Not a kindergarten class in 'journalism'. Let them show themselves for what they are.

Tiggeryoubastard Wed 27-Jan-16 20:50:00

Excuse - excuse

Tiggeryoubastard Wed 27-Jan-16 20:50:31

Aargh. Breathe....
Excise = excuse.

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