Stuff is allowed to keep silencing people

The Nazis did it. Stalin did it. Chairman Mao did it and Pol Pot did it. One of the first things that happens when regimes are starting to take control is that they close down freedom of expression and freedom of the press.

Now Stuff has done it. quote.

On November 28, 2018?Stuff?published an editorial?Quick! Save the Planet: We must confront climate?change. The editorial, written by Editor in Chief Patrick Crewdson, began, “Despair isn’t the worst reaction?to climate change. Complacency might be.” He alerted readers to a long-term Stuff project, launching that day, that aimed to “disturb our collective complacency”.

The editorial continued:

This project accepts a statement that shouldn’t be controversial but somehow still is: climate change is real and caused by human activity.

Mature adults can disagree about the impact of climate change and how we should react. We’ll?feature a wide range of views as part of this project, but we won’t include climate change?”scepticism”. Including denialism wouldn’t be “balanced”; it’d be a dangerous waste of time.?The experts have debunked denialism, so now we’ll move on. end quote.

Okay… well, the statement that most of us were concerned about was this one.

But anyway… quote:

Andy Espersen complained that?Stuff?policy took no account of the Global Warming Policy Forum, a?body of equally eminent scientists coming to somewhat different opinions from the IPCC.

He cites the Media Council principle which says “In articles of controversy or disagreement a fair voice?must be given to the opposite view.” He says “It is no accident that Accuracy, fairness and balance are?listed as the first ethical principle in that code ? I cannot imagine any circumstances where a?newspaper is justified in withholding opposing views from its readership.”

For the record the Media Council notes that the principle cited goes on to say “Exceptions may apply for?long-running issues where every side of an issue or argument cannot reasonably be repeated on every occasion.”

Stuff?has come to the conclusion, as many other publications have, that there is an overwhelming consensus in the scientific community that anthropogenic climate change is happening and it is a critical issue.

The Council’s principles also allow an exception from the requirement for balance for long running issues where the various views have been well canvassed. Climate change has now?become such an issue.

[I]t would be fair to say that unless the scientific consensus on climate change shifts markedly, or important new information comes to light, it is unlikely complaints alleging lack of balance,?because the climate change sceptic viewpoint is not included, will be successful.

The Statement of Principles preamble also states that publications have the right to adopt a forthright?stance or to advocate on any issue.?Stuff?is well within its rights to adopt such an approach, particularly?since it has advised its readers it is doing so.

The Media Council does not find?Stuff?to be in breach of any principle. end quote.

Not even freedom of speech?

I think you will find that Stuff is in breach of the rules around freedom of speech, but it has decided to ignore those, shutting down people, in many cases, who have considered and researched responses that do not agree with their position.

It seems that it is not only Stuff that wants to shut down free speech. It seems that it is the Media Council as well.

Sieg Heil Stuff! Sieg Heil Media Council! This will all end in tears… eventually, as we all know.

 

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