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Article in Times newspaper

dave35dave35 Posts: 1,124
edited January 2008 in The bottom bracket
I've posted this in the office aswell, what do you think?
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/commen ... 097464.ece
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Posts

  • Matthew Paris complaining about smug self-satisfaction??? O the irony
    <a>road</a>
  • I really hate littering: it's anti-social and makes the country a poorer place to live.

    I don't doubt that some cyclists do chuck litter off the bike but surely, where he talks about cans, Lucozade bottles etc, most use dedicated bike bottles etc for their drinks? Unless you're a pro you're not going to be chucking these every time they run out.

    What a poor article to take what appears to be a load of circumstantial 'evidence' and suggest that we are all morons.

    And as for being shouted at, next time I see Matthew Parris, I'll probably be up for giving him some abuse. :twisted:
  • dennisndennisn Posts: 10,584
    homercles wrote:
    I really hate littering: it's anti-social and makes the country a poorer place to live.

    I don't doubt that some cyclists do chuck litter off the bike but surely, where he talks about cans, Lucozade bottles etc, most use dedicated bike bottles etc for their drinks? Unless you're a pro you're not going to be chucking these every time they run out.

    What a poor article to take what appears to be a load of circumstantial 'evidence' and suggest that we are all morons.

    And as for being shouted at, next time I see Matthew Parris, I'll probably be up for giving him some abuse. :twisted:

    Interesting read. Stupid subject? Yes and no. Parris is obviously writting to be
    controversial and get more readers. That's his job. He may or may not believe or
    even care what he writes as long as it's read by as many people as possible and
    causes controversy. This sells papers for some reason. News doesn't seem to
    be much of a part of "newspapers" these days. Just a bunch of opinions. You have
    actually played right into his hands by posting his article on this web site and responding to his rant in ay way, shape, or form.
    Dennis Noward
    rant in any way, shape. or form.
  • Interesting read. Stupid subject? Yes and no. Parris is obviously writting to be
    controversial and get more readers. That's his job. He may or may not believe or
    even care what he writes as long as it's read by as many people as possible and
    causes controversy. This sells papers for some reason. News doesn't seem to
    be much of a part of "newspapers" these days. Just a bunch of opinions. You have
    actually played right into his hands by posting his article on this web site and responding to his rant in ay way, shape, or form.
    Dennis Noward
    rant in any way, shape. or form.

    Absolutely, but passing comment on such stuff is fun sometimes, no?

    In much the same ways that sometimes people leap on your posts (yes, I do mean YOUR posts) which are on occasions clearly designed to provoke response rather than add to the debate. I'm sure they feel better for unloading, equally you probably get a laugh out of having raised someone's heckles? :)

    Oh, and it wasn't me who located/ posted the article. Was it I who was the 'interesting read'? That'd be a first!
  • Right, so when morons read his rubbish and start to do just what he suggests, will he be arrested for incitement to commit murder ?? he should be sacked for this sort of 'jouralism'.
    I must say goodbye to the blindfold
    And pursue the ideal
    The planet becoming the hostess
    Instead of the meal
    Roy Harper - 'Burn the World'
  • dennisndennisn Posts: 10,584
    homercles wrote:
    Interesting read. Stupid subject? Yes and no. Parris is obviously writting to be
    controversial and get more readers. That's his job. He may or may not believe or
    even care what he writes as long as it's read by as many people as possible and
    causes controversy. This sells papers for some reason. News doesn't seem to
    be much of a part of "newspapers" these days. Just a bunch of opinions. You have
    actually played right into his hands by posting his article on this web site and responding to his rant in ay way, shape, or form.
    Dennis Noward
    rant in any way, shape. or form.

    Absolutely, but passing comment on such stuff is fun sometimes, no?

    In much the same ways that sometimes people leap on your posts (yes, I do mean YOUR posts) which are on occasions clearly designed to provoke response rather than add to the debate. I'm sure they feel better for unloading, equally you probably get a laugh out of having raised someone's heckles? :)

    Oh, and it wasn't me who located/ posted the article. Was it I who was the 'interesting read'? That'd be a first!

    I'm one of those people who will read just about anything. Like the back of a cereal
    box when I have breakfast. I pretty much find most everything people write interesting.
    This site I really like. Do I get into peoples sh*t. Sure, it's just that sometimes I'll read
    something that I can't believe is a real question and then the "Evil One" in me takes over.
    You're absolutely right about me provoking responces. Wow, maybe I'm more like Parris
    than even I care to admitt. As far as the "interesting read", I was talking about the
    Parris article. It was weird at best. Probably exactly what his editors wanted. Seems like
    he's just a "writting pawn" and not really writting what he wants but what someone else
    tells him to.

    Dennis Noward
  • feelfeel Posts: 800
    As a motorcyclist as well as a cyclist i was appalled to read the vitriol being poured on cyclists by the editorial comment in MCN (motorcyclist news) I wonder who'll be after me next :shock:
    We are born with the dead:
    See, they return, and bring us with them.
  • dennisn wrote:
    Seems like he's just a "writting pawn" and not really writting what he wants but what someone else tells him to.

    Dennis Noward

    I do feel that many of these so-called big name columnists (I guess Parris is one, Littlejohn's another, Clarkson, etc - I'd imagine you have well known Stateside equivalents) essentially take the money and then parody themselves these days. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised to find out that half their columns were ghostwritten, a chance for young staffers to practice vitriolic ranting.
  • dennisndennisn Posts: 10,584
    homercles wrote:
    dennisn wrote:
    Seems like he's just a "writting pawn" and not really writting what he wants but what someone else tells him to.

    Dennis Noward

    I do feel that many of these so-called big name columnists (I guess Parris is one, Littlejohn's another, Clarkson, etc - I'd imagine you have well known Stateside equivalents) essentially take the money and then parody themselves these days. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised to find out that half their columns were ghostwritten, a chance for young staffers to practice vitriolic ranting.

    I can believe that. What strikes me these days is the lack of "News" in the news. Even
    on the television news it seems to be more about opinions than actual news. Here in the
    states the two big 24 hour a day news stations CNN and Fox News spend a considerable
    amout of air time telling everyone how horrible(CNN) or great(Fox) George Bush is. Seems like the also do a lot of ranting. It's terrible. Add in the fact that they all know exactly how to fix everything that's wrong and you've really got a cluster fu*k for news.

    Dennis Noward
  • RedAendeRedAende Posts: 158
    the BBC news has been so dumbed down over the years that how can we expect any better from private media.

    Much as all the female BBC newsreaders would be most welcome in my bed and provide 10 o'clock eye candy I can always look at girls in lycra shorts thread and expect newsreaders to read NEWS, is that too much to ask.

    Back on topic, Matthew Paris obviuosly has the brains of Paris Hilton.

    And why the animosity between motorbikers and cyclists. I gave up the bike as a teenager when I got my first nifty fifty, progressed through bigger and bigger engines until I was on Harleys, and am now back to pedal power. I also drive a Lotus Elan and a kitcar. Anyone that is vulnerable to tin boxes 4 x 4's etc should be supporting each other.

    Red Aende, Red Spesh Hardrock, Wine Mercian, Rusty Flying Scot
  • Re Redaende's post, I ride a motorbike myself and have often wondered why there is so much antagonism between bikers and cyclists. Both groups are at danger from pretty much the same things - mud and diesel on the road, sub-standard car driving etc, and neither can get in each other's way that much can they? Just about the only time I can remember getting annoyed at cyclists when out on the motorbike is when they converge en-masse at the same cafe as me!

    I hope Parris gets (at least) a severe dressing down for this nonsense; If I were a national print 'journalist' and advocated chucking bricks at cars off of footbridges I'd expect my P45 to follow fairly shortly. But then he is an old tory and thus a selfish censored , always was, always will be.

    [/quote]
  • ddraverddraver Posts: 24,076
    i reckon its only cos we can RLJ and get away with it (don't start!) and we can fit through smaller gaps in full on city traffic and thus filter more effectivly - other wise there would be a brotherhood between all two wheeled bretheren
    We're in danger of confusing passion with incompetence
    - @ddraver
  • I rang the paper, and the editor responsible is a chap called Daniel Finkelstein:

    [email protected]

    I was advised to address any complaints about the article to him, but he wasn't availabale to speak to today. Everyone knows Matthew Parris is desperately clutching at a failed public career and will pretty much say anything to keep his name in the public's gaze, but there appears to have been a failure of editorial control here....I really think this has overstepped the mark of acceptability.
  • Maybe Matthew Paris would prefer country lanes to be reserved for Range Rovers and quad bikes..

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/u ... 101602.ece
  • What a clown that bloke is.
  • Quote from replies to article

    'An exercising cyclist puts out more CO2/km than a small car. Brian Vallance, Corfu, Greece'

    Gov figures show that most cars emit more than 120g of CO2 per Km.

    So, on my usual 90Km sunday ride, according to Mr Vallance, I emit more than 10800g or 10.8 Kg of CO2. so I lose nearly a fifth of my weight. Yeah, right
    I must say goodbye to the blindfold
    And pursue the ideal
    The planet becoming the hostess
    Instead of the meal
    Roy Harper - 'Burn the World'
  • geoff_ssgeoff_ss Posts: 1,234
    stevejmo7 wrote:
    Quote from replies to article

    'An exercising cyclist puts out more CO2/km than a small car. Brian Vallance, Corfu, Greece'

    Gov figures show that most cars emit more than 120g of CO2 per Km.

    So, on my usual 90Km sunday ride, according to Mr Vallance, I emit more than 10800g or 10.8 Kg of CO2. so I lose nearly a fifth of my weight. Yeah, right

    Hmmm Perhaps it's just possible that a world class track sprinter might put out that level of CO2 in the last 200m of a race but continuously ... ? I wish.

    I wonder how Parish would feel about an article entitled 'All shirt-lifting smug Times journalists should have their throats cut' It's equalling appalling and disgusting.

    Geoff
    Old cyclists never die; they just fit smaller chainrings ... and pedal faster
  • I partly agree with Matthew Paris in that many cyclists tend to drop their rubbish everywhere ie gel wrappers plastic bottles and behave inconsiderately but at the end of the day he is just another journo with so many words to write each day and not really to be taken seriously. He used to be very entertaining on Talk Radio in his shock jock days.
  • thankfully its in the times so not many scalls will get to read what the stupid bulb has written
    'dont forget lads, one evertonian is worth twenty kopites'
  • Mike HealeyMike Healey Posts: 1,023
    stevejmo7 wrote:
    Quote from replies to article

    'An exercising cyclist puts out more CO2/km than a small car. Brian Vallance, Corfu, Greece'

    Gov figures show that most cars emit more than 120g of CO2 per Km.

    So, on my usual 90Km sunday ride, according to Mr Vallance, I emit more than 10800g or 10.8 Kg of CO2. so I lose nearly a fifth of my weight. Yeah, right

    If does explain Lance Armstrong's success in the TdF tho'. Starting weight 64kg, less 264kg (2200km * 120g/km) = finishing weight of -200kg. So that's why he was such a good climber.
    Organising the Bradford Kids Saturday Bike Club at the Richard Dunn Sports Centre since 1998
    http://www.facebook.com/groups/eastbradfordcyclingclub/
    http://www.facebook.com/groups/eastbradfordcyclingclub/
  • geoff_ssgeoff_ss Posts: 1,234
    I emailed Daniel Finklestein, the editor responsible and got a reply:

    Thank you so much for your note. It was good of you to let me know how you felt. It is always valuable to have such feedback and I am most grateful to you for taking the time to provide it. Naturally matthew does not seriously wish physical harm to befall cyclists. His tongue was firmly in his cheek.
    I think what makes the times a great newspaper is that we let our columnists free to make mischief. But I accept that we dont all draw lines In the same place

    Sent from my iPhone

    On 29 Dec 2007, at 15:09, "Geoff S wrote:

    >
    > Sir
    >
    > I understand you are the editor responsible for contributions from
    > Matthew Parris. If so, I wonder if you accepted the disgusting column
    > published on 27th December? I have rarely had the misfortune to read
    > such arrogant and ill informed rubbish before and certainly not one
    > coupled with incitement to murder. If a similar attack had been
    > directed at a racial, religious, or sexual minority it would, rightly,
    > be condemned, but it seems it's open season to kill cyclists. I simply
    > cannot understand how anyone with any trace of humanity could propose
    > killing a group of people indiscriminately - or at all. I hope you
    > will request he prints an abject apology at the earliest opportunity
    > although I guess it's unlikely as the once respected Times follows its
    > Murdoch stablemate, the Sun, into the gutter.
    >
    > Geoff S


    So it was all 'tongue in cheek'? So that's all right then.

    Geoff
    Old cyclists never die; they just fit smaller chainrings ... and pedal faster
  • webbhostwebbhost Posts: 470
    so basically what he is saying is "F**k off... I dont give a monkeys censored if we have offended a whole community of people. I think he needs the sack too.
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    Laurent7 wrote:
    I partly agree with Matthew Paris in that many cyclists tend to drop their rubbish everywhere ie gel wrappers plastic bottles and behave inconsiderately but at the end of the day he is just another journo with so many words to write each day and not really to be taken seriously. He used to be very entertaining on Talk Radio in his shock jock days.

    Not in my experience. Where are these cyclists carrying these bottles to throw them away ?
    Sure the pros do it, but they'll be swept up as souvenirs by fans and its not often we get pro races going by ?

    I've seen banana skins lobbed into fields but thats about it. Car drivers seem to be far worse.
  • clantonclanton Posts: 1,287
    cougie wrote:
    Laurent7 wrote:
    I partly agree with Matthew Paris in that many cyclists tend to drop their rubbish everywhere ie gel wrappers plastic bottles and behave inconsiderately but at the end of the day he is just another journo with so many words to write each day and not really to be taken seriously. He used to be very entertaining on Talk Radio in his shock jock days.

    Not in my experience. Where are these cyclists carrying these bottles to throw them away ?
    Sure the pros do it, but they'll be swept up as souvenirs by fans and its not often we get pro races going by ?

    I've seen banana skins lobbed into fields but thats about it. Car drivers seem to be far worse.

    I've seen one cyclist use and discard a disposable lucozade bottle whilst on the Southern Sportive (and took him to task for it) but IMO this is very much the exception to the rule. By and large cyclists are a responsible and environmentally aware bunch.
  • webbhostwebbhost Posts: 470
    I too have written an e-mail of complaint. I look foward to their reply and will post it on here if I recieve one.

    A little bit of pressure from the public should get their attention.... send your complaint too!.
  • dsmiffdsmiff Posts: 741
    Just came across this....

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/comment/columnists/guest_contributors/article3110970.ece

    Maybe this is as close to an apology that the times will publish.
    ______________________________________________
    My Photo\'s
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/dsmiff/set ... 588563134/
    My Video\'s
    http://www.youtube.com/dnsmiff
  • webbhostwebbhost Posts: 470
    Hey,

    Cool, well I accept that as an apology.

    Here is the e-mail that was sent and recieved from me :)

    :D

    It wasn't even a little bit annoying to hear from you. I am grateful for emails like yours because they help me calibrate my editorial decisions.
    I have already spoken to Matthew and he is certainly aware that a number of people took offence at his piece.
    All the best
    D



    From: Nathan Webb####
    Sent: 30 December 2007 12:58
    To: Finkelstein, Daniel
    Subject: Re: Hi Daniel, Please read.


    Hi,

    Thankyou for your reply, please do check, afterall it wouldn't be good if we found him sitting at the side of the road with some wire, someone could (and have in the past) get seriously hurt by that :)

    I figure a public apology is not going to happen, but if you could just make him aware of the damage he has caused with this article it would be greatly appreciated as it seemed like nothing but a sheer excuse to have a moan about cyclists. He needs to be more careful when he is writing. I honestly think it was "way" over the line, but as you stated, different people draw the line in different places.

    Sorry if my e-mail was of an annoyance to you, I figure that I am probably one of a minority that has contacted you.

    Thank you for your time, and a happy new year to you too.
    Original Message
    From: Finkelstein, Daniel
    To: Nathan Webb
    Sent: Sunday, December 30, 2007 12:49 PM
    Subject: RE: Hi Daniel, Please read.


    Thank you so much for your note letting me know how you feel about Matthew's article. I am so sorry you found it offensive. Naturally Matthew had his tongue in his cheek. I am pretty confident he doesn't actually wish to chop people's heads off at random because other people driving a similar vehicle once dropped a high energy drink in a hedge. I'll check.
    In a robust opinion page nobody can be immune from a blast at their expense, provided that it is done with wit and cogency. I don't think you would want to read an insipid paper so scared to offend people that it never said anything. Car drivers, cyclists, people who fly, Gordon Brown, David Cameron, no one escapes entirely and I hope that is what makes us worth reading.
    I understand however that we all draw the line in different places and it is very valuable to me as an editor to hear your opinion about our decision this time. I thank you very much for sparing the time and wish you Happy new year.
    Daniel



    From: Nathan Webb###
    Sent: 30 December 2007 12:04
    To: Finkelstein, Daniel
    Subject: Hi Daniel, Please read.


    Daniel,

    I write to you with regards to an article that has been placed on timesonline.co.uk. Apparently you are the right person to address this to.

    I am pretty sure you know which article I am referring to by now, none other but the article by "Matthew Parris" - "What's smug and deserves to be decapitated?".

    According to this article, I am apparently a littering, disregardful no brained cyclist that deserved to be decapitated with piano wire.

    Now I dont know about you, but I find this article EXTREMELY offensive. As a cyclist I know that it is hard enough to get a little bit of respect on the roads as it is - which we have a full right to use - and articles like this are basically saying to the public that we are a bunch of wankers...... disrespect us, cut us up more and try your best to injure us. If you check internet forums I am sure you will find that the whole cycling community has been offended by this article, and if you dont want to do that you only need to check the comments for the page.

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/commen ... 097464.ece

    I await your reply, and I wish for it to be an apology regarding the article, which will hopefully contain details of a public apology which will soon be posted.

    If a public apology is NOT given out by mr Matthew Parris, I will boycott the times news paper, and tell people around me to aswell.

    Thankyou for your time.
    Nathan Webb
  • bagpusscpbagpusscp Posts: 2,907
    The words....back pedalling come to mind.
    bagpuss
  • geoff_ssgeoff_ss Posts: 1,234
    Well done Nathan. Perhaps we're getting through. As a Guardianista :) I also wrote to Matt Seaton who writes an informed cycling column weekly pointing out Parris' article. he may see fit to use it for a future column of his.

    Geoff
    Old cyclists never die; they just fit smaller chainrings ... and pedal faster
  • webbhostwebbhost Posts: 470
    cool geoff

    let us know if he writes anything in relation lol.
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