Friday, April 20, 2007

Worst plant since giant hog weed

Sent to me by a little bird is this interesting story about the Sunday Telegraph:

Worst plant since giant hog weed

A clumsy attempt to infiltrate the UK Independence Party has been foiled.

Tom Harper, a journalist on the Sunday Telegraph, used his middle name to try to con the party into thinking he was a supporter, but still kept his real name on his voice mail and forgot to use his fake e-mail address.

Harper asked if he could help as an unpaid intern while claiming that he'd been working on the same terms for the Tory party.

UKIP initially thought he was a Tory plant and played him along by feeding him laughable made up stories, but once they found out that he was a journalist, threw him out.

He was identified within a very short space of time and everyone in the party had been warned about him.

This sneaky attempt at snooping occurred only weeks after the party gave the Sunday Telegraph an unlimited interview with the party leader.

A spokesman for the party said the whole plot was "underhand, and not at all in the decent style of undercover journalism."

"We are considering making a complaint to the press complaints commission about this.

"For a journalist to spy on another journalist is degrading to the profession. And what really annoys us is that he wasn't any good at it.

"Perhaps if they wish to try it again they could send someone who had mastered the art of subterfuge?"

I am told that some of the things they told him include a candidate who said he couldn't be on sky news because he wasn't a subscriber and mass defections to and from every party under the sun...which he, of course, dropped himself in by asking 'what was the name and which constituency' instead of laughing or feigning general interest.

And who says the standard of journalism has fallen?

The Sunday Telegraph aren't exactly known for their accurate coverage, as readers of the Kitchen may have noticed from some of my previous posts. But not to heed advice that they have been hoodwinked and to run the story anyway shows a certain amount of pigheadedness.

1 comment:

james higham said...

A little bit nonplussed by this one. Strange brain probably.

Oh yeah? So what has happened for the last ten years, exactly?

Over at the ASI, they are posting some of the winning entries of the Young Writers on Liberty. One does not want to put such keen minds off,...