Monday, 6 June 2011

'Broken leg'

The Mail website had the pathetic Mail on Sunday splash about 'the swear word that wasn't' near the top of its homepage for much of yesterday. But in the evening, a far more important story broke. So important, indeed, that the Mail website ran it as a splash across the whole width of their homepage - something it had previously done for events such as the General Election, the Japanese earthquake and the Royal Wedding.

It was:

As Martin Belam commented on Twitter:

The article repeated the headline, but included a bullet point sub-head containing a snippet of extra information:

'A broken leg' - and from the way the Mail website has presented the story, it appears to be pointing the finger of blame at 'boy band bruiser' Campbell:

Campbell, former Director of Communications for Tony Blair between 1997 and 2003, later tried to play down the row, saying it was ‘all a bit handbags’.

But Parker was later stretchered off the pitch with a suspected broken leg.

Ah - so the 'broken leg' becomes a 'suspected broken leg' further down the article.

And, according to Campbell, he wasn't even playing in the match in which Parker was injured:

What The Mail has managed to do in that lovely way it has is link this skirmish with a later incident when Tom was carried off on a stretcher. I would just like to point out that this happened in a subsequent match, in which I was not involved.

But what does Parker have to say about his 'broken leg'?

'A twisted knee'. So not a broken leg at all.

Campbell added:

So to those fans of The Wanted protesting on twitter that I broke his leg – I didn’t, and I was also pleased to learn as we left the stadium that the injury was not as serious as first thought, so nobody did.

Where would those fans of The Wanted got the idea that Campbell had broken Parker's leg?

The Mail's article first appeared at 5:45pm under the Daily Mail Reporter's byline. It included many grammatical errors ('firsts flying') as well as the factual one about the state of Parker's leg. A re-write at 2:20am by Chris Brooke corrected some of them, but several - including the reference to the 'broken leg' - remain.


  1. Well, i suppose it's just as easy to mistake 'twisted knee' for 'broken leg' as it is to mistake 'no WMDs' for 'can nuke us all'

  2. Alastair Campbell now an MP? Weird. Good to see unknown boy band members know things the rest of us don't.

  3. 'firsts flying' isn't a grammatical error, it's a spelling error. Great blog though... :)


Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment.

Comments are moderated - generally to filter out spam and comments wishing death on people - but other messages will be approved as quickly as possible.