Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Is Jeremy Duns Lying About Being A Journalist?

Jeremy Duns frequently refers to himself as a journalist, especially when he is attacking writers on Twitter, which is one of his main occupations.

He has also, as has been detailed on this blog, claimed legal rights accorded to journalists. For example, he claimed it was alright to tape private phone calls on the grounds that he was a journalist investigating a crime.

But is Duns really allowed to describe himself as a journalist?

It is a matter of record that Duns worked for a publication in Brussels that later closed down.

He has also written for a few British newspapers, largely on the subject of how much he loves the women-hating, racist fictional character James Bond.

I think there is a question over whether writing a few articles on a freelance basis allows someone to describe themselves as a 'journalist'. A number of footballers or politicians, for example, do the same, and they are not usually described that way.

But leave that aside for now.

In the last year, I can see no evidence that Duns has been employed as journalist at all.

If you look at he journalisted site, the last article he wrote was in April 2013, and even that was a re-print of an article from 2011.

There was another article in 2011 about Bond, and before that two in 2009.

And, well, that is it.

Now Duns has sometimes said that it is the case that he does a lot of journalism that is not on the web. I find that odd, since there are very few publications these days that are not online. But if that is true, then Duns is welcome to post evidence below.

My question for this post is, is a man who has not written a new article for three years still entitled to call himself a journalist?

I can understand the case that the criteria for being a journalist are not clear. Some belong to the National Union of Journalists, and some do not. There are also some that are employed by a company, and some that are freelancing for themselves. But it surely cannot be argued to be the case that anyone can just call themselves  a journalist without the requirement to offer any evidence.

An ex-journalist is acceptable.

But if someone was once a taxi driver, are they allowed to describe themselves as a taxi driver when they no longer do so? Or a plumber? Or a web designer? The answer has to be not. So Duns is not allowed to call himself a journalist. 

Duns is once again twisting the truth. It is time his fabrications were exposed.

2 comments:

  1. Dashiell Hammett wrote his last novel more than a quarter of a century before his death. Was he no longer a novelist during that period? Just an ex-novelist?

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  2. There is quite a lof of stuff that is wrong here, but let me just address what seems to be your central question (although I thought I'd addressed it last time):

    'My question for this post is, is a man who has not written a new article for three years still entitled to call himself a journalist?'

    Well, I have written new articles in the last three years! This, for instance, was last year: http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-21628728

    And this is the accompanying programme, which I researched, wrote and presented: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01r0hsx

    I've just spent two years writing a non-fiction book, which was published last year. That was history, but also investigative journalism, digging into a Cold War spy operation. And I'm working on various things now that are also journalism, and will see where they land up. I also have my own company, and in its remit is all kinds of writing and stuff related to it: fiction, journalism, editing, etc. Before I published my first novel, I was a journalist in Brussels for several years, as you say, and I then worked as an editor at a scientific journal. Since publishing my first novel I've concentrated much more on fiction, but I also still do work as a freelance journalist and over the last few years have been published by The Times, The Sunday Times, The Daily Telegraph, The Sunday Telegraph, The Guardian, The Mail on Sunday, The Daily Mail (in collaboration with others), Time Out, Mojo, The Daily Beast, Intelligent Life, the BBC and several others.

    I hope that clears this up.

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