>This is my blog, mine and mine alone. No-one else has any say in what I write, no-one else sees it until I hit ‘Publish’. If there is a conflict of interest between anything I may put on this blog and any voluntary (or other) position that I may hold in the community or elsewhere, then that is my responsibility alone and – if the conflict is irreconcilable – may require me to reconsider that community position.
It is in the nature of blogs that they are spontaneous, opinionated and personal, and I have every intention of continuing to say whatever what I wish on this and any other blogs that I am responsible for – and that includes subjective criticism (= personal opinion) on any films, tv programmes, books, records or choirs – or people – that I may wish to comment upon. I do so advisedly, and taking full responsibility for anything I may write.
Some time ago a team that I am currently a member of signed a legally binding agreement with a 3rd party, and the agreement included an undertaking that they would not make defamatory comments about that party. I was not a member of that team at the time, and I was not – and am not – a signatory to that agreement. As I understand it, one of the clauses in that agreement was that it was not to be discussed with non-signatories and as a result I do not know the details – it therefore seems absurd to suggest that I am in some way bound, by association, by it or its terms. Nevertheless the person that I ‘criticised’ took it upon themselves to contact a conciliatory service and solicitor and threaten legal action against the team.
Given that the ‘agreement’ does not extend to me (this has since been confirmed to me by a solicitor who was involved in drawing up the agreement), I intend to continue blogging as before and, while I have no wish to be unpleasant or defamatory, I reserve the right to say whatever the heck I wish on any of my personal blogs within the bounds of decency and legality. It is an unavoidable aspect of the performance/entertainment industry that one gets reviews, both formal and informal, and I for one have certainly had my fair share of negative ones. An artist who is confident in their work should not feel threatened or undermined by criticism – one simply accepts or ignores it.
I removed (deleted – not retracted) my post of 11th June as a personal favour to my ‘team leader’, who was being threatened with legal action despite it having nothing whatsoever to do with them. But I stand by every word that I wrote and, given the behaviour of the aforementioned third party with regard to it, I have half a mind to rewrite it and republish it. I have already accepted (and acknowledged to that person, in a private email) that it was written in haste and not subject to my usual editing process, and a simple “whoah, steady on, could you tone it down a bit” from that person would have worked wonders – the fact that he chose to threaten legal action, rather than contact me directly (yes, he has my email address and phone number) is perhaps the worst bit about this.
I’ll be back – and if said person does anything else to annoy me then I’ll talk about them again.