Oh dear. I'm beginning to feel guilty. And it's Stephen Pollard's fault. He's accused me of "fisking" Mary Dejevsky HERE. First of all I thought I had been indulgings in some peculiar sexual fantasy, but I gather it's got something to with Robert Fisk, although I'm not quite sure what. Perhaps, dear readers, you could enlighten me.
Anyway, Mary has been in touch. I didn't expect such a lofty columnist to bother with a mere blogger, but she's been rather sweet. She says in her email...
my abject apologies. you can see i'm not a lobby correspondent. i was seduced by your self-description as right of centre MP. oh dear...
But Mary, you're at it again. Nowhere have I ever described myself as an MP! And now I'm told by Ellee Seymour that on the basis of my Channel 4 Podcastpiece this morning, the Guardian are doing a piece in G2 tomorrow on women and blogging. Mary, you see, this blog has more influence that you thought. Anyway, I trust we've all learned from today.
UPDATE: 10pm Jesus, there's even a Fisking Blog. HERE.
UPDATE: 10.30pm I have been remiss is not giving a hat-tip to Clive Davis who alerted me to the Dejevensky column this morning. Without him my day would have been so much less interesting! His blog is one that I look at most days - he's very good on transatlantic issues.
"The term Fisking, or to Fisk, is a blogosphere term describing ruthlessly detailed point-by-point criticism that highlights errors, disputes the analysis of presented facts, or highlights other problems in a statement, article, or essay."
As opposed to Fisting which is something entirely different.
The internet slang fisking started being used around the same time as the word moonbat.
Can we bring back 'pilgering' in honour of the late Bron Waugh?
For the definitive authority on blogging terms go here:
Fisk verb. To deconstruct an article on a point by point basis in a highly critical manner. Derived from the name of journalist Robert Fisk, a frequent target of such critical articles in the blogosphere (qv).
Usage: "Orrin Judd did a severe fisking of an idiotic article in the New York Times today..."
Oh dear. I seem to remember this columnist as being based in Washington for some years and providing quite thoughtful and interesting comment. But what does it say about the Independents comment editor that he's obviously never heard of Iain Dale. Should get out out more.....
"But what does it say about the Independents comment editor that he's obviously never heard of Iain Dale"
Yes, the world clearly revolves around this little blogosphere.
how anyone can feel sympathy for anyone who wroks for the Indy is beyond me.
I think Ms Digestive dropped a contact lens in contraceptive jelly before looking bleary eyed at your resume (top left of blog) where it says '...right of centre political commentator...'
Either that or she doesn't know the difference between a political commentator and an MP...
Iain, when was the last time a newspaper columnist gave a hat tip to another columnist? Bloggers' etiquette is far better.
And journalistically, if she was going to diss you, why didn't she ring you first? You're not the most difficult guy to get hold of.
Blogs are refining political journalism, but those at risk most are the people who offer columns on national papers. They can still offer money but the influence is seeping elsewhere, and money will follow.
You could sue her for libel for calling you an MP...
Seems the Indy are having a bad week:
"Labour was relegated to fourth place behind the UK Independence Party in its Welsh heartland."
(I mailed them so this might get corrected before the comment is approved)
Mary's name isn't really Dejevsky you know, she uses it to make herself sound more authentic when commenting on Eastern Europe (as it used to be called). She had a nickname at the Beeb.
I passed your post on to "Fisking Central" as I thought it a fine example of the genre. What is the correct etiquette for third parties passing your posts from one to another for comment and discussion? I'm sure most people would be happy to notify you if you so wished. Either way, as it was destined for a complimentary write-up, I didn't think you'd mind.
It would be grotesque to suggest, merely on the basis of the odd factual howler here and there, that the dead tree media is somehow less assiduous in checking facts than the blogosphere - I suspect it is actually far more careful to get its facts straight - but given the disdain with which many journalists regard bloggers, and given the subject and tone of Dejevsky's piece, you'd have thought she'd have done just a tiny bit of research.
If I were doing a hatchet job on you for a newspaper column I wouldn't dream of clicking on 'send' until I was sure of my ground. Even a five minute scroll around your blog would have caused any self-respecting hack to delete the word "MP" and, at the very least, alter or qualify the phrase "pro-Cameron".
Jane, above said:
"Mary's name isn't really Dejevsky you know ..... She has a nickname at the Beeb."
Come on Jane, don't be a tease tell all - BBC nicknames are often exquisitely cruel!
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