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posted by martyb on Saturday May 20 2017, @07:36PM   Printer-friendly
from the shouting-questions-in-a-crowded-hallway dept.

John M. Donnelly, a senior writer at CQ Roll Call, said he was trying to talk with FCC Commissioner Michael O’Rielly one-on-one after a news conference when two plainclothes guards pinned him against a wall with the backs of their bodies.

Washington Post

“Not only did they get in between me and O’Rielly but they put their shoulders together and simultaneously backed me up into the wall and pinned me to the wall for about 10 seconds just as I started to say, “Commissioner O’Rielly, I have a question,” Donnelly said Friday.

Donnelly said he was stopped long enough to allow O’Rielly to walk away.

Los Angeles Times

Donnelly, who also happens to be chair of the National Press Club Press Freedom team, said he was then forced out of the building after being asked why he had not posed his question during the news conference.

O'Rielly apologized to Donnelly on Twitter, saying he didn't recognize Donnelly in the hallway. "I saw security put themselves between you, me and my staff. I didn't see anyone put a hand on you. I'm sorry this occurred."

Politico

According to the publication for which the reporter works (archived copy),

Senators, including Judiciary Chairman Charles E. Grassley, are warning the Federal Communications Commission about its treatment of reporters after a CQ Roll Call reporter was manhandled Thursday.

“The Federal Communications Commission needs to take a hard look at why this happened and make sure it doesn’t happen again. As The Washington Post pointed out, it’s standard operating procedure for reporters to ask questions of public officials after meetings and news conferences,” the Iowa Republican said. “It happens all day, every day. There’s no good reason to put hands on a reporter who’s doing his or her job.”

Additional coverage:

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Original Submission

 
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  • (Score: 1, Troll) by Runaway1956 on Saturday May 20 2017, @07:44PM (30 children)

    by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Saturday May 20 2017, @07:44PM (#512689) Homepage Journal

    The bodyguards didn't even have to get violent. They just got in the way, LOL!

    --
    There is a supply side shortage of pronouns. You will take whatever you are offered.
    Starting Score:    1  point
    Moderation   0  
       Flamebait=1, Troll=2, Informative=1, Funny=1, Underrated=1, Total=6
    Extra 'Troll' Modifier   0  

    Total Score:   1  
  • (Score: 4, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 20 2017, @08:04PM (4 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 20 2017, @08:04PM (#512696)

    Oh look! Derp's here celebrating censorship. Where is the mighty blubberer to put him in his place? Freedom of speech is the most important thing of them all!!!!

    And Derp? Apparently you can't read either, "pinned me to the wall" is assault.

    • (Score: -1, Troll) by frojack on Saturday May 20 2017, @08:20PM

      by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Saturday May 20 2017, @08:20PM (#512700) Journal

      Oh look, its buthurt's anonymous alter ego venting his outrage.

      --
      No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 20 2017, @09:13PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 20 2017, @09:13PM (#512734)

      -1 faggotry

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 20 2017, @10:44PM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 20 2017, @10:44PM (#512762)

      "pinned me to the wall" is assault.

      We only have butthurt reporter's word for that, don't we.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 21 2017, @09:05PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 21 2017, @09:05PM (#513155)

        The staff reports that incident quite differently. It seems that after the press meeting, staff was huddled together, making their way back to their offices. Some mad man came running down the hallway, and ran into two of their members. It almost looked like the mad man was trying to tackle his victims. Full body contact, just like football - WHAM! Security escorted the mad man from the building, before he could make another attempt to tackle the staff.

  • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by frojack on Saturday May 20 2017, @08:19PM (18 children)

    by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Saturday May 20 2017, @08:19PM (#512699) Journal

    Got in the way for ten whole seconds.

    I have no doubt this reporter was being the usual arrogant shouter trying to get his rendition of the same exact question already asked and answered in the press conference. If fact the youtube shows exactly that.

    The guy kind of reminds me of Buthurt, who piles on link after repetitive link on the end his stories as if the same liberal press story is somehow more believable in the echo chamber of a thousand links all saying the same thing.

    Buthurt: Stop that.
    Editors: Put a stop to that. He's just playing link bait for biased press.

    --
    No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
    • (Score: 3, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 20 2017, @08:58PM (13 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 20 2017, @08:58PM (#512719)

      I'd be interested in your quoting the part of the First Amendment that says violating Freedom of The Press is OK if you only do it for 10 seconds.

      piles on link after repetitive link

      Yeah. I've said before that including a link but not quoting from that page just adds bulk to the submission without adding information.

      -- OriginalOwner_ [soylentnews.org]

      • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Runaway1956 on Saturday May 20 2017, @09:22PM (3 children)

        by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Saturday May 20 2017, @09:22PM (#512736) Homepage Journal

        I'm more interested in your justification for chasing an official down after he leaves a press conference, to interrogate him at your own leisure. There are established protocols for this stuff, you realize?

        --
        There is a supply side shortage of pronouns. You will take whatever you are offered.
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 20 2017, @09:46PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 20 2017, @09:46PM (#512745)

          You never heard the term "public servant"?
          How about "I pay your salary"?

          I made a submission about a way to deal with Congresscritters who duck out on/avoid town hall meetings in their districts.
          With GOP Reps in Hiding After Trumpcare Vote, Dems "Adopt" Those Districts [soylentnews.org]

          -- OriginalOwner_ [soylentnews.org]

        • (Score: 5, Informative) by http on Saturday May 20 2017, @10:06PM (1 child)

          by http (1920) Subscriber Badge on Saturday May 20 2017, @10:06PM (#512750)

          You are almost right that there are protocols. FTFS:

          "...As The Washington Post pointed out, it’s standard operating procedure for reporters to ask questions of public officials after meetings and news conferences,”

          Just so there's no misunderstanding, the direct quote from the WP article: "Seeking to question officials after news conferences is standard practice for journalists in Washington."

          I know thinking is hard and thirty seconds is a long time, but please - do so before each post.

          --
          I browse at -1 when I have mod points. It's unsettling.
          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 21 2017, @09:10PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 21 2017, @09:10PM (#513157)

            That happens all the time with the president, doesn't it? What needs to happen, is for some papparazzi to be shot down like dogs, for harassing people. Then, the courts need to make sure that the body guards are acquitted. Put just a little chill on overly exuberant "reporters". If the low-life papparazzi deaths don't send the proper message, then the Secret Service can target a couple lower-caste "reporters" in Washington.

      • (Score: 2) by frojack on Saturday May 20 2017, @09:41PM (5 children)

        by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Saturday May 20 2017, @09:41PM (#512742) Journal

        I don't think freedom of the press means what you think it does. Did you skip the 6th grade?

        All it means is they won't be prosecuted for printing government secrets.
        It doesn't give them special access, the right to go anywhere at anytime and accost any government employee at will.

        Time for you to go back to school.

        --
        No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 20 2017, @10:11PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 20 2017, @10:11PM (#512752)

          It would be interesting for you to point to a similar defense of a public servant done by you during a Democrat administration.

          ...and it's sad when people don't know history.
          Reporters shouting questions at passing officials is as old as time itself.
          Ronnie Raygun would mime that he couldn't make out the question.
          It's all a part of the game.
          Even Reactionary Reagan didn't have thugs get physical with reporters.
          That part is a more recent addition.

          -- OriginalOwner_ [soylentnews.org]

        • (Score: 2) by butthurt on Sunday May 21 2017, @12:27AM (3 children)

          by butthurt (6141) on Sunday May 21 2017, @12:27AM (#512798) Journal

          The First Amendment also encompasses "freedom of speech." Asking a question would be encompassed by that, I should think.

          • (Score: 2) by frojack on Sunday May 21 2017, @03:00AM (2 children)

            by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Sunday May 21 2017, @03:00AM (#512848) Journal

            Nobody prevented him from speaking.

            --
            No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
            • (Score: 2) by butthurt on Sunday May 21 2017, @03:14AM (1 child)

              by butthurt (6141) on Sunday May 21 2017, @03:14AM (#512856) Journal

              I would imagine that being pinned against a wall would be likely to impede someone's speech. Mr. O'Reilly gave a different account of what happened. You say you've seen a video, and I asked where that was, but you didn't answer.

              • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 21 2017, @09:13PM

                by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 21 2017, @09:13PM (#513158)

                Keep imagining. An unauthorized person wandering through a government building may expect to be pinned to the wall - maybe even permanently. Just stick some knives through his arms and legs, pin him to the wall like a butterfly. Leave his rotting corpse right there on the wall, as a warning to the next fool to come along.

      • (Score: 2) by Arik on Saturday May 20 2017, @09:50PM (2 children)

        by Arik (4543) on Saturday May 20 2017, @09:50PM (#512746) Journal
        "I'd be interested in your quoting the part of the First Amendment that says violating Freedom of The Press is OK if you only do it for 10 seconds."

        And I'd be interested in finding out how you think this situation amounts to making a law abridging the freedom of the press.
        --
        If laughter is the best medicine, who are the best doctors?
        • (Score: 1, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 20 2017, @11:26PM (1 child)

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 20 2017, @11:26PM (#512784)

          In what way is legal physical restraint of the press in public areas not a law abridging the freedom of the press?
          It is hard to imagine a more literal demonstration freedom being abridged.

          You authoritards are ridiculously servile.

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 21 2017, @09:14PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 21 2017, @09:14PM (#513159)

            Servile? Let me serve you some tube steak, you little whiny bitch.

    • (Score: 2) by butthurt on Saturday May 20 2017, @09:52PM

      by butthurt (6141) on Saturday May 20 2017, @09:52PM (#512747) Journal

      > [...] as if the same liberal press story is somehow more believable in the echo chamber of a thousand links all saying the same thing. [...] He's just playing link bait for biased press.

      I do have my biases, but I try to be fair. In a recent submission I quoted from the National Review and linked to the New York Post. Perhaps you prefer publications that are farther to the right, or perhaps you didn't bother to consider that story, which ran yesterday, in your evaluation of me?

      /politics/article.pl?sid=17/05/19/2250233 [soylentnews.org]

      For this story, please confirm: you're saying that the Daily Caller and the Meridian Star out of Meridian, Mississippi are too liberal? Who covered this story in a way that you would accept?

    • (Score: 2) by butthurt on Sunday May 21 2017, @01:30AM

      by butthurt (6141) on Sunday May 21 2017, @01:30AM (#512824) Journal

      > If fact the youtube shows exactly that.

      Link, please?

    • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 21 2017, @08:30AM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 21 2017, @08:30AM (#512932)

      To go offtopic, this kind of shit from long time established users is one reason I will not donate to this site. It is a soapbox for authoritarian apologists promoting a future police state. On one hand many users will cry about freedom of speech and surveillance, but then they turn around and applaud actions such as this.

      Sure SN may be uncensored, but censorship does take on a cultural aspect as well. The sheer level of bullshit promoted in the comments is daunting, and I'm not sure I want to fund a soapbox for such people. Discussions are often sidetracked into bullshit arguments, with the more vocal users never responding when finally called out for their shit.

      Tell me to fuck off all you want, call me a snowflake or whatever makes you feel better, but this site IS becoming an echo chamber for the libertarian / alt right. There are very vocal opponents to this worldview, but the steady hammering of close minded responses is driving people away. Suspected admin abuse for moderation and IP tracking has been voiced before, which to me is not surprising. Hell, in a recent thread one user said that a spam moderation was inappropriate, and TMB responded with "handled". Let users counter-mod if they believe something to be incorrectly modded, but that instance made me question how many comments have been modified by admin abuse. Many geeks who run their own systems are the fiefdom types (no I'm not the AC who started of the fuck SN thread in the updates article) who enjoy their special privileges. Given TMBs history of trolling / lies I would not think it unlikely for him to mod comments to counter suspected "brigading".

      Unless SN can do something to alleviate these potential problems and concerns then I will not every subscribe. Perhaps log all official actions and make them publicly visible. Also, develop some methods of preventing admin abuse. It was stated that IPs are not logged / tracked, but TMB recently revealed that the IPs are stored as hashes, and with some work could be unveiled. I have my own reasons to suspect he does some personal tracking of AC comments. Again, address these concerns and bring back the trust that is supposedly so sacrosanct. With troll admins like TMB it is simply too much to ask for simple faith.

      • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Sunday May 21 2017, @09:19PM

        by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Sunday May 21 2017, @09:19PM (#513161) Homepage Journal

        Oh, but of course, it's not an echo chamber for the progressive left, now is it?

        --
        There is a supply side shortage of pronouns. You will take whatever you are offered.
  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Arik on Saturday May 20 2017, @08:20PM (5 children)

    by Arik (4543) on Saturday May 20 2017, @08:20PM (#512701) Journal
    Yes, it sounds like they were 'polite but firm' that this person they didn't recognize was not going to just walk up to their charge and interrupt his journey. And "why didn't he ask his question during the conference" actually seems like a pertinent question here. If I just gave a press conference and answered their questions and then one of them tried to accost me on the way out to ask another question I might very well feel reasonable in brushing right on past and ignoring them. Should have asked it during the conference, now you'll have to email.

    From TFA: "There’s no good reason to put hands on a reporter who’s doing his or her job.”

    Alright but is that actually what happened? Did they lay hands on him or simply give him the polite but firm cold shoulder for a critical couple of seconds thereby allowing their charge to get on with his day? Not the same thing at all.

    --
    If laughter is the best medicine, who are the best doctors?
    • (Score: 4, Informative) by AthanasiusKircher on Saturday May 20 2017, @10:11PM (4 children)

      by AthanasiusKircher (5291) on Saturday May 20 2017, @10:11PM (#512751) Journal

      Sure, a story like this can easily become a "he said, she said" kind of thing where nobody really knows what happened. Except several people likely know what happened -- at least the reporter, two security guards, and O'Rielly. Given that this happened immediately after a press conference in a public place, it's likely there were other witnesses too.

      it sounds like they were 'polite but firm' that this person they didn't recognize was not going to just walk up to their charge and interrupt his journey.

      If they actually pushed him into a wall and held him there (even briefly), as he claims, that's a little more than "polite but firm."

      If I just gave a press conference and answered their questions and then one of them tried to accost me on the way out to ask another question I might very well feel reasonable in brushing right on past and ignoring them. Should have asked it during the conference, now you'll have to email.

      In normal (non-Trump) times, it's pretty common for reporters to approach a speaker and ask questions within a public space. It's absolutely the right of the speaker to "brush past" if they want. It's less typical for plainclothes "goons" to step out and push someone up against a wall, unless they're doing something aggressive or which makes them look like a credible threat.

      is that actually what happened? Did they lay hands on him or simply give him the polite but firm cold shoulder for a critical couple of seconds thereby allowing their charge to get on with his day? Not the same thing at all.

      I agree. It's "not the same thing at all."

      Here are several reasons why I think your interpretation is less likely in this instance:

      (1) O'Rielly actually apologized directly. The FCC has said on the record that they "apologized repeatedly." If this were just a minor misunderstanding, they'd likely emphasize that instead. The strength of the apologies seem to mean they know something inappropriate likely happened.
      (2) This isn't just a single reporter tweeting about what (supposedly) happened to him. The story was part of a National Press Club press release [press.org]. That signals to me that either they greatly respect this reporter and trust that he wouldn't exaggerate something like this and/or there were other witnesses that noticed something odd happening.
      (3) The Ars Technica piece has this to say about what happened AFTER the incident:

      “One of the guards, Frederick Bucher, asked Donnelly why he had not posed his question during the press conference,” the National Press Club wrote. “Then Bucher proceeded to force Donnelly to leave the building entirely under implied threat of force.”

      Donnelly also alleged that the security guards shadowed him as if he were a security threat and waited for him outside the bathroom, “even though he continuously displayed his congressional press pass and held a tape recorder and notepad.”

      This doesn't sound like "Oops -- sorry we had to push you out of the way to ensure our guy could get past" kind of behavior. This sounds more like "YOU WILL RESPECT MA' AUTHORITAY!" kind of behavior.

      • (Score: 1) by tftp on Sunday May 21 2017, @02:55AM (2 children)

        by tftp (806) on Sunday May 21 2017, @02:55AM (#512845) Homepage

        (1) O'Rielly actually apologized directly. The FCC has said on the record that they "apologized repeatedly." If this were just a minor misunderstanding, they'd likely emphasize that instead. The strength of the apologies seem to mean they know something inappropriate likely happened.

        This is exactly why so many people recommend to never apologize for anything. If you do, it will be seen as admission of guilt.

        • (Score: 2) by AthanasiusKircher on Sunday May 21 2017, @05:04AM

          by AthanasiusKircher (5291) on Sunday May 21 2017, @05:04AM (#512889) Journal

          It's not the mere fact of an apology -- it's the emphasis. If there's a misunderstanding, and you want to "save face" publicly and emphasize no wrongdoing, you might apologize AND explain the misunderstanding. Here, instead you have mutiple FCC officials emphasizing apologies, including the commissioner himself, and no attempt to "save face" other than some muttering about vague "threats" that could have caused security to be a little anxious or something. (There are always vague "threats" to blame stuff like this on.)

        • (Score: 2) by dry on Sunday May 21 2017, @05:16AM

          by dry (223) on Sunday May 21 2017, @05:16AM (#512891) Journal

          What if you are guilty? We all fuck up once in a while.

      • (Score: 2) by Arik on Sunday May 21 2017, @03:56AM

        by Arik (4543) on Sunday May 21 2017, @03:56AM (#512870) Journal
        "If they actually pushed him into a wall and held him there (even briefly), as he claims, that's a little more than "polite but firm.""

        To quote the article: "two plainclothes guards pinned him against a wall with the backs of their bodies."

        That being his interpretation. If we assume he's a little prickly, as I'd expect someone of his station to be, that sounds pretty consistent with my read. Two big guys with their shoulders together accidentally-on-purpose crowding him off to a wall when he really wanted to jump center stage and accost their charge.

        It's consistent with either interpretation though, I'll grant.

        "(1) O'Rielly actually apologized directly. The FCC has said on the record that they "apologized repeatedly." If this were just a minor misunderstanding, they'd likely emphasize that instead. The strength of the apologies seem to mean they know something inappropriate likely happened."

        I really don't think it's proper to frame an early apology as an admission of guilt. It's perfectly possible they weren't/aren't 100% sure what actually happened aside from this guy got his feelings hurt, so they say sorry.

        And 3 is your best point, if it proves out to be true it certainly changes things.

        --
        If laughter is the best medicine, who are the best doctors?