After the out-of-touch inmates of the Baby Shard bunker used a photo of shadow home secretary Diane Abbott drinking from a can of M&S mojito on an Overground train to attack her, they discovered that out there in the real world, Ms Abbott enjoys rather a lot of support from real people, rather than abusive Twitter bots. She did, remember, score more than 75% of her constituency’s vote in the 2017 General Election.
That, though, was the least of the Murdoch goons’ worries. For starters, as the Tweeter known for the moment as Mojito Communarde (Geddid?!?!?) has pointed out, the claims of lawbreaking levelled at Ms Abbott are over-egging the pudding somewhat. “She was in breach of By-law No. 4(3), the penalty for which is being told to leave the train (Unless a conductor saw her and told her it was OK to continue)”.
So when the Sun ranted “Mick Neville, a retired Scotland Yard Detective Chief Inspector, said: ‘It’s shocking that she is breaching a law that was brought in to keep order on public transport … London’s got enough problems without senior politicians drinking on trains … TfL should be looking into this and sending her a fine. She should face action as a deterrent to others”, they - and he - showed a total ignorance of the law.
Tony Gallagher - still out of touch
There is no further sanction that TfL, or anyone else, can apply to Ms Abbott. Worse, as Tom Pride has revealed, is that Mick Neville has significant previous. As Pink News told back in 2016, “Detective Chief Inspector Mick Neville, who heads the Metropolitan Police’s Central Images Unit, is facing a probe from the Directorate of Professional Standards … It comes after flags were raised via the Independent Police Complaints Commission about public posts Neville had made on Facebook”. And the nature of those posts?
They included severely adverse comment on LGBT issues (whining about it being “politically correct”), and this gem: “A victory over Left wing, political correct zealots!!! All my family has fought for this country for five generations to preserve our way of life & freedoms. In the name of ‘equality’ these evil creatures try to stop all opinions except their own”. He’s shown partiality, by backing UKIP. And has indulged in migrant bashing.
Pride ends with this observation: “Personally, I think obsessive strange men secretly taking photographs of women on trains is much more worrying than someone taking a little drink from a can on the way home from work”. Well, whoever took that photo and (presumably) flogged it to the Sun is in potentially serious trouble. As are the Murdoch goons.
That’s down to TfL’s film and photography policy, which states “We get many requests from tourists, train enthusiasts, budding photographers and customers 'passing through' a station who may want to take photographs for their own personal use. We agree that this is acceptable, at the station's discretion, as long as additional camera equipment (including flash and tripods) is not used”. But the photo was not taken for personal use.
So the Sun should have cleared use of the photo with TfL, as it is clearly a TfL train interior where it was taken. Did they? My Occam’s Razor is telling me the hacks were so focused on kicking the Rotten Leftie™ that they didn’t bother.
Someone could indeed face further action over this story. But it won’t be Diane Abbott.
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"... people filming or taking photographs for their own purposes on TfL's network are responsible for ensuring they comply with the requirements of privacy and data protection legislation."
I don't think spreading all over the gutter press is 'own purposes'. So a possible breach of data protection then?
Who took the photo? Did they get paid for it?
The Sun’s position will be that editorial use trumps other restrictions on the use of this image. This stuff is a minefield.
As a TfL train guard I personally would and indeed have (as have many of my colleagues) turned a blind eye to someone drinking a solitary can of alcohol on one of our trains. The most we can do, as others have pointed out, is remind them it is against regs on TfL and ask them to desist. If they refuse to comply, we then ask them to leave the train at the next available stop. And that's all we can do really. It's a nonsense ruling (and I'm saying this anon for obvious reasons) because other rail companies across the land not only allow for alcohol consumption on board, they even sell alcohol on board. However, if I caught someone surreptitiously photographing or filming a woman on one of my trains, you can bet you I'd intervene and demand he deletes the footage and exits the train.
Oh look, The S*n's got a pet prejudiced ex cop to lend some credence to their non story...shame only idiots will be nodding their heads in agreement to the incorrect crap he's spouting that I imagine the editorial team have schooled him in saying anyway. Why do the establishment and the MSM hate Abbott? Oh yeah, it's because she is an influential black woman. Thankfully, in 2019 the majority of people have no problem with that and indeed welcome it, but The S*n etc still think it is 1982 and Fiona Bruce finds it hilarious to think of a black woman and a white man ever having sex.
Oh it's much worse than that. Ex-cop Mike Neville claims on his "private eye" website Neville Forensic Recognition that he is a "world expert" on CCTV and the laws that govern them yet he clearly broke Transport for London laws by filming Abbott and distributing the pics.
Is this a common practice of Neville's and how does it affect what might be complex legal cases involving evidence gathered via illegal filming that he may be involved in?.
And what laws cover the media who published photos that were obtained by breaking the law?
The Sun and the Abbott haters may now wish this whole matter to die a quick death as it's basically back-fired but that's not good enough.
Claims of public interest won't wash re data protection.
I’ve never seen a guard on a tfl train anyway.
@Mnemonic, 15:25 that's because they were 'phased out' in 2013, something they've been trying to do up here in the North West but have so far resolutely failed. We can still drink on trains up here too!
Mind you, this anon may mean he's a former guard with TfL?
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