Author Topic: should prisoner have access to media platfroms while serving their sentence?  (Read 503 times)

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Offline WakeyWakey

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after james english has been knocked back by shotts governer from giving interview to the convicted. it raises the question should people serving sentences have any media platform access.

bamber of course has done phone interviews as has david gilroy - ian simms and michael obrien successfully got the ruling overturned that banned all prison interviews back in 90s

currently state of play is , correct me if wrong,  letters are ok, phone calls permitted but anything thats going to be published requires governer permission, face to face only in special cases with permission if prisoner deemed to need help of journalist to highlight MoJ

leaving aside questions of "is james english a journalist" lol - should prisoners be able to give interviews to just any rag, youtube chancer etc?

Offline Harper

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He did this interview with the Herald last year:

https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/16881794.luke-mitchell-interview-i-would-rather-stay-behind-bars-than-admit-my-guilt-for-murder-of-jodie-jones/

I wonder why James English was not allowed when this was? I guess the major thing is that James English would be recording and the other was a newspaper article.

Offline Steve_uk

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I don't see anything wrong with the above interview. If it's on camera and slanted with a view to entertainment such as Darlie Routier-The Wrong Man (A Cry fir Help) then I think a line has been crossed.

Offline sandra L

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He did this interview with the Herald last year:

https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/16881794.luke-mitchell-interview-i-would-rather-stay-behind-bars-than-admit-my-guilt-for-murder-of-jodie-jones/

I wonder why James English was not allowed when this was? I guess the major thing is that James English would be recording and the other was a newspaper article.

If it's a simple decision that anyone convicted of murder should not be allowed to be filmed/audio recorded in prison, then we would expect that ruling to apply across the board - to all prisoners convicted of murder?

There have been interviews with people convicted of murder in English prisons, both filmed and audio recorded, but we can't include them because, as I've pointed out many times before, the rules are different in Scotland.

So how was this allowed in Scotland just 2 years ago:

 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GVKiIa9RXwQ

William Gage has always protested his innocence - he lost his appeal in 2012. It's an actor who appears in the visual film in the link above but it's a recording of William Gage's voice.

Is it because, in this instance, WG is talking not about his own circumstances, but about the realities of prison life? Whatever the reason, it was allowed.

Incidentally, Harper, he didn't "do this interview with the Herald" - the interview was with a student as part of her final dissertation and was picked up, with others, by the Herald when the student not only received a 1st class pass, but also won a number of awards for her work. Had she been interviewing Luke "for the Herald," I doubt she would have been allowed past the prison doors.

Offline Steve_uk

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If it's a simple decision that anyone convicted of murder should not be allowed to be filmed/audio recorded in prison, then we would expect that ruling to apply across the board - to all prisoners convicted of murder?

There have been interviews with people convicted of murder in English prisons, both filmed and audio recorded, but we can't include them because, as I've pointed out many times before, the rules are different in Scotland.

So how was this allowed in Scotland just 2 years ago:

 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GVKiIa9RXwQ

William Gage has always protested his innocence - he lost his appeal in 2012. It's an actor who appears in the visual film in the link above but it's a recording of William Gage's voice.

Is it because, in this instance, WG is talking not about his own circumstances, but about the realities of prison life? Whatever the reason, it was allowed.

Incidentally, Harper, he didn't "do this interview with the Herald" - the interview was with a student as part of her final dissertation and was picked up, with others, by the Herald when the student not only received a 1st class pass, but also won a number of awards for her work. Had she been interviewing Luke "for the Herald," I doubt she would have been allowed past the prison doors.
I would think that's it.

Offline Harper

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I did not know that and it’s not made clear in the article. They make it sound like the Herald had exclusive access. It’s disappointing that Luke has never been able to tell the story from his point of view.

Offline WakeyWakey

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If it's a simple decision that anyone convicted of murder should not be allowed to be filmed/audio recorded in prison, then we would expect that ruling to apply across the board - to all prisoners convicted of murder?


i cretainly would expect that to apply universal.

I don't see anything wrong with the above interview. If it's on camera and slanted with a view to entertainment such as Darlie Routier-The Wrong Man (A Cry fir Help) then I think a line has been crossed.

aalways wondered how eg the people who interviewd david gilroy for the "body of proof" podcast manage to get permission and use the recordings they did. its clearly an entertainment podcast they made, true crime in style of making a murderer.

kind of grim if future of highlighting miscarriage of justices is having a popular podcast and social media likes

Offline Davie2

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I did not know that and it’s not made clear in the article. They make it sound like the Herald had exclusive access. It’s disappointing that Luke has never been able to tell the story from his point of view.


He has. Though his mouth piece Sandra Lean, and his mother Corrine Mitchell. The laughable thing is, all three don't sing from the same hymm sheet  ;D ;D ;D

I also might add, maybe somebody with a little, tiny, weeny bit of credibility was to interview him, then it might happen. But when you have somebody like James English, who glorifies criminals, from murders, to football hooligans, bank robbers, vicious violent narcissist type men, then it is any surprise he got told to FO. 
« Last Edit: December 16, 2019, 06:47:PM by Davie2 »

Offline sandra L

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Technically, prisoners have the right to speak to journalists, etc, if the purpose is to highlight a claimed miscarriage of justice, but each case is at the discretion of the prison governor.

In Luke's case, the reason given for refusing the interview with James English was that "it would cause a public outcry" - isn't that what our mainstream media does every day of the year?

I don't agree that letting people tell their stories in their own words is "glorifying" them, especially when some of these stories contain powerful messages for those of us who have never been involved in a culture of crime, violence, etc. We can't properly change anything we don't understand.

Offline WakeyWakey

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Incidentally, Harper, he didn't "do this interview with the Herald" - the interview was with a student as part of her final dissertation and was picked up, with others, by the Herald when the student not only received a 1st class pass, but also won a number of awards for her work. Had she been interviewing Luke "for the Herald," I doubt she would have been allowed past the prison doors.

Can I ask how it is that you come to know these detail sandra? Are you sitll in regular contact with luke to this day?

Offline sandra L

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I was involved with arrangements for the student to visit Luke as part of her research and yes, I'm still in regular contact with Luke.