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Tuesday, August 01, 2006 

A Response emerges on Emailgate

Sicilian Notes posts a reply:
"Email Postscript

Following this post, the Sunday Independent ran this article. Much nonsense online has followed. While I regard the matter as closed, and said this when contacted by the author of the Independent piece, some clarification is in order.
First, I should not have published the name of the person who sent the email, as that put me on the wrong side of my own email policy. I'm happy to put my hands up and accept that I was in the wrong on that count. It's a remote probability that the author checked the policies or even knew they were there, but that's immaterial."
Regardless of whether or not there was a written policy, there is certainly a netiquette that private email carries some privileges. That Sicilian Notes put these principles into a written blog policies document just emphasises that Richard was aware of such custom.
"Second, the reports that the author lost his job are news to me. I know only that disciplinary processes were initiated. I neither know nor have any interest in what become of the email's author. Those presuming either way should limit themselves to known facts."
Here's a fact:

It's the same story out at UCD [helicopter noise - EWI note]. More often than not, when stepping outside there'll be one in the sky. The faint whir is audible as I type at the moment. Happily the noise inside this concrete bunker we all work in is reduced to insignificance, but the sheer number is striking. Given that helicopter traffic to UCD itself is unlikely on academic salaries, the supposition is that much of it is for the Radisson, which apparently is a favourite hideout of the helicopter set.

Posted by Richard Waghorne :: 7/14/2006 10:09:00 AM

"Third, the allegation online that I have misused IT facilities at one of my places of work is entirely incorrect."
The allegation that Richard has misused IT facilities has never been made. He has, however, been invited to reflect on the hypocrisy of castigating another person for the expenditure of taxpayer's money in a private cause while he himself clearly does likewise (UCD enjoying subvention from the public purse).
"Moreover, had I chosen to use UCD facilities to blog outside the time I allocate to fulfill my responsibilities there I would have been entirely entitled to do so, as is every other member of staff and the student body."
This is entirely up to UCD to decide, and not something that this blog concerns itself with. What does concern us is whether Richard uses any of our tax-euros to promote his views: the exact same justification ("Your taxes at work.") he used for outing the Údaras employee.
"It is possibly defamatory to report that I am in breach of contact by misusing facilities."
It is also "possibly" defamatory to falsely claim that someone else has made defamatory remarks about your own self. Richard has never been accused of breach of contract, about which we profess no opinion one way or the other: he has merely been labelled a rank hypocrite for likewise using facilities at least in part public-funded.
"I note in passing it has not been made by anybody writing under their own name. I note also that I have sought recourse to libel lawyers in the past with a 100% success rate to date. If the author is serious, I invite him or her to publish the claim under their own name. I will then refer the matter to one my lawyers (I find it a sad reflection on the world that at twenty-two I already have need of two of them). I invite those who have made or spread this claim to withdraw it. "
It is a matter for Richard Waghorne if he wishes to waste time and money pursuing a defamation case where it is abundently clear that none such has occurred. As to his concerns over pseudonymous bloggers, we suggest this little quiz for readers; just how many Waghorne-blogrolled right-wing bloggers are also pseudonymous?
"Fourth, though doubtless accidentally, Sarah Carey is incorrect in reporting that I "probably wouldn’t do it again". I would act exactly as I have with the single exception, as already mentioned, that I would not have made public the actual name of the person who sent the email. That an inappropriate and abusive email was sent from a state funded body is a matter of legitimate public interest and I would have considered myself remiss in not reporting the email, as I did straightaway, and in making public the basic facts of the matter. At the time I had no idea whether the author was a chief executive or a secretarial temp and would in any case have treated the matter in the exact same manner irrespectively. If the author did indeed lose his job the responsibility for that fact is entirely his and I neither express nor feel regret. There will be no apology. The responsibility is his and no amount of politically-motivated dislike of yours truly changes that fact."
Does Richard apologise for violating email confidentiality and publicly naming him? Apparently not...
"Fifth, Sarah Carey is in the wrong when she argued that I "shouldn’t have let the SINDO article go forward implying that [I] hadn’t complained". I supplied the journalist with all the information he requested and an accurate timeline of events on the day. I have at no point denied this and would have no reason to. If she is unhappy with the article in the Sunday Independent she should get in touch with the paper. They will, presumably, then tell her to get a life. As she is in the business of demanding apologies from people, myself included, she might consider, if not an apology, a correction at least."
In that case, there is a rather curious coincidence in that both articles forget to mention this detail; the disclosure of which might otherwise have taken the shine off Mr. Waghorne's halo in this sordid tale [1].
"Lastly, had the Irish language zealots who protested my brief piece in such inflammatory and unreasonable language across the blogosphere"
Inflammatory and unreasonable language isn't unknown to Mr. Waghorne, we fear.
"had the minimal maturity to respond in a rational fashion and desist from explicitly directing readers to send hate mail to my account, they would not have had one of their own suffer, by all accounts, a clear career setback of one type or another. You lost."
Who are the "you"? Alas, we can only speculate as to what VGLC (Vast Gael-Linn Conspiracy) Richard may have uncovered....
"And it was needless and entirely your fault."
Again, we're completely in the dark as to who the "you" is meant to be.
"Learn from it by learning to deal with disagreement as adults and not as caricatures of fringe interest lunatics. I accept no blame in the matter, reserve my right to report civil servants in the future for similar breaches of contract, and advise those who have devoted not inconsiderable time to this most trivial of news stories to find something else to blog about in what could hardly be considered a slow news week."
Have done. Back to this, now.
"The matter is closed."
So commandeth the Prince of the Internets.

[1] the Sindo reader demographic being unlikely to grasp the finer points of email ettiquette.

Labels: ,

"Libel"-Richard Waghorne
"Attack blog"-Damien Mulley

About me

  • An early-thirties male Irish technologist living and working in Dublin, I'm a former (recovering) member of both Fianna Fáil and the Roman Catholic Church.

    I'm not a member of any political party these days, but my opinions can be broadly categorised as 'lefty' and republican. I am also a former member of the Irish Defence Forces.

    Please feel free to check out the FI Fie Foe Fum group blog, where I was once a regular contributor, and the Cedar Lounge Revolution, where I can usually be found in the comments.

    (This blog and its contents reflect only my own personal opinions as a private citizen, and not those of any other person or organisation.)



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