Herald editor says steps were taken to remove contentious 'Scud Stud' article

CALGARY -- The editor of the Calgary Herald testified Thursday that steps were taken to remove from the web a contentious article that led to a lawsuit by former television journalist Arthur Kent.

See Full Article

Lorne Motley said the Herald's parent company, Postmedia, attempted to suppress the 2008 column written by Don Martin on its websites as well as in its Infomart archives after Kent filed his suit and demanded the article be taken down.

"The story should be very difficult to search or call up," Motley told a defamation trial Thursday. "You really shouldn't see anything on Infomart. There would be a notation saying why it's being restricted."

"Online you would not be able to find it."

Court has already heard that the article suddenly re-emerged in 2012 on the Ottawa Citizen's home page, as well as on websites of other papers across the Postmedia network.

Kent described it as a "Lazarus article." He testified that he complained to an editor at the Citizen, who agreed to take it down, but the column was resurrected within a day.

Motley acknowledged that had happened.

"The article was dealt with by employees who did not know the litigation that was ongoing between the parties. When those familiar with the litigation became familiar over what happened, there was a decision to unsuppress the column," Motley said.

Kent's lawyer, Kent Jesse, argued that the reposting was an effort to put pressure on Kent to move the lawsuit along. He pointed to earlier Motley testimony which said Postmedia had tendered an offer to Kent.

"I have a very difficult time answering that question because I don't know the answer. But I also know that I am not to say anything about that in this court, so you're putting me in an awkward position," Motley replied.

Kent, who was nicknamed the "Scud Stud" for his reporting on the Gulf War for NBC, is suing Postmedia, the National Post and Martin for the piece that referred to Kent as a "dud" while he was campaigning for a seat in the Alberta legislature.

The piece portrayed him as an out-of-control star candidate facing a revolt from his election team.

Jesse questioned whether all versions of the Martin article had been suppressed by Postmedia. He said there were several versions ranging in length from 722 words to 778 and all had different ID numbers.

"I would suggest to you that this demonstrates there were at least six versions of the Martin article that were posted or available on the media defendants' websites," said Jesse.

Motley replied that there were only two versions -- the one that was printed in the Calgary Herald and the other that was carried by the National Post.

"The National Post removed some wording of what they published in print," Motley said. "They are the same article. It is the same story."



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Iran denies U.S. destroyed an Iranian drone near Persian Gulf

    World News CBC News
    Iran on Friday denied President Donald Trump's statement that a U.S. warship destroyed an Iranian drone near the Persian Gulf after it threatened the ship — an incident that marked a new escalation of tensions between the countries less than a month after Iran downed an American drone in the same waterway and Trump came close to retaliating with a military strike. Source
  • Explosion outside Kabul University kills 6, wounds 27

    World News CBC News
    A powerful bomb exploded outside the gates of Kabul University in the Afghan capital on Friday, killing at least six people and wounding 27, according to police and health officials. No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, the latest to target Kabul. Source
  • Animation fans lay flowers, pay respects at Japan studio ravaged by arson

    World News CBC News
    Animation fans and Kyoto residents gathered at the site of Japan's worst mass killing in 18 years on Friday, offering flowers and prayers for the 33 people who died in an arson attack on an animation studio in the city. Source
  • 4 Chicago police officers fired over Lacquan McDonald shooting

    World News CBC News
    The Chicago Police Board fired four police officers on Thursday for allegedly covering up a white officer's 2014 fatal shooting of black teenager Laquan McDonald. The nine-member board found the officers exaggerated the threat posed by 17-year-old McDonald in order to justify his shooting by Jason Van Dyke. Source
  • Biden and Harris set for rematch in upcoming Democratic debates

    World News CTV News
    ATLANTA -- The second set of summer Democratic presidential debates will feature a rematch with a twist, plus the first showdown of leading progressives as the party wrestles with its philosophical identity and looks ahead to a 2020 fight against U.S. Source
  • Trump to nominate son of late Supreme Court justice as labour secretary

    World News CBC News
    U.S. President Donald Trump announced on Thursday his intention to nominate Eugene Scalia, son of the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, to be the secretary of labour. Trump tweeted the news Thursday evening, less than a week after his previous secretary, Alexander Acosta, resigned amid renewed criticism of his handling of a 2008 secret plea deal with wealthy financier Jeffrey Epstein, who was indicted earlier this month for sexually abusing underage girls. Source
  • Scrapie, a disease related to mad cow, found in two flocks of sheep in Alberta

    Canada News CTV News
    The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says some sheep in Alberta have been infected with scrapie, a fatal disease that affects the animals' nervous system. The federal agency's website says classic scrapie, which can be transmitted to other sheep and goats, was confirmed last month in two flocks in Central Alberta. Source
  • Conservatives 'declaring war on Canada Food Guide' like they did on long-form census, Trudeau says

    Canada News CBC News
    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is defending his government's update to the Canada Food Guide in the wake of attacks by Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer who suggested the changes were riddled with "bias" and driven by "ideology. Source
  • Puerto Ricans, furious at their governor, are forging a movement to boot him out

    World News CBC News
    Cruise passengers drifted through the streets of Old San Juan on Thursday as shop owners took plywood down from store windows and painted over graffiti demanding Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rossello resign. On a colonial plaza behind the governor's mansion, a small group of men and women laid out the shoes of people who died in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, each decorated with a blue flower. Source
  • Brother of Syrian refugee badly injured in Halifax fire updates condition

    Canada News CTV News
    The brother of a Halifax man who was badly injured in a fire that killed his seven children said his sibling is slowly recovering but doubts whether he knows exactly what happened to his family. Source