Sadly, all those attempts to silence this blog have been totally unsuccessful, and in the case of the legal threats from the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his tame gofer, the odious flannelled fool Henry Cole, have ended up backfiring on the perpetrators and leaving them covered in rather more than confusion, while providing a little light entertainment to my legal team and more excellent spectator sport.
So one might have thought that the smear merchants within the media establishment might think twice before going after an online presence which they perceive as a threat to their cosy cartels, but that thought would have been misplaced, as former Screws deputy editor Neil “Wolfman” Wallis has shown as he has begun to snipe at crowdfunded online platform Byline Media - because it is becoming very successful.
Wallis, who was also known by the rather less felicitous nickname of “The rasping f***wit”, decided to deflect a question by Peter Jukes into the beginning of his smear attempt: “what's your financial interest in Byline? You promote it madly, yet you're strangely absent from the website?!” was swiftly followed by “So do you have any financial interest whatsoever?”, which may seem innocuous, but it is not.
During the hacking trial, one of the Mail titles was ready to run a smear on Jukes claiming that his crowdfunding for live-Tweeting proceedings was somehow improper, because he didn’t have a mortgage, but claimed he had missed a payment. The paper spiked the story after significant online ridicule at the amateurish smear - Peter sold the property concerned during the trial. The author of that smear is thought to be a pal of Wallis.
That smearing is the name of the game was clear when Wallis Tweeted “Peter may be many things, but I'm sure he's never pretended to be a journalist”. Classic establishment smear - only real journalists approved by the establishment can have stuff published. This is drivel. But that wasn’t stopping Wallis: “I'm asking if you have a financial interest in the site as a whole, not simply your column”.
Jukes is an advisor to Byline. This is well-known, but having this confirmed to Wallis had him suggesting “Wasn't so hard, was it!? Nothing wrong with you being a paid advisor to a site you promote...as long as it's public”. Yes, brave campaigning Wallis drags information out of shady online advisor! Now all he has to do is go back to his pal and get it all inflated into something that can be called a “story”, a “revelation”, even.