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Help me Boycott a Publisher!

Vi_KingVi_King Posts: 6Member Listener
edited April 17 in Disabled people
Hello everybody.

I am disabled. I have been for several years now. And, like all of you I have suffered the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune against me in the constant battles with society.

I honestly thought I had seen and heard it all until two days ago when someone showed me an article that had been published in one of the UKs biggest hobbyist magazines, Car Mechanics.

The magazine is aimed, strangely enough, at DIY mechanics and hobby mechanics. It is published monthly. In the magazine there is a section called "Dealers Diary", written by [removed by moderator]. [removed by moderator] has never been a fan of the Motability Scheme but when you read what he has written this month I think you might just agree that he hasn't just crossed a boundary, he's driven a huge truck through it!

On Page 48 of the May 2019 edition he writes the following, under a heading entitled "Dishing the Dirt":
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"You really need to attend a large sale of returned, aged Motability cars just to see what feral people are capable of when given a free car..........it's jaw-dropping to see never mind smell".
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Firstly, [removed by moderator] is perpetuating the myth that Motability cars are given out free of charge. This is, of course incorrect, but by stating this in writing in a popular publication I believe he is encouraging or inciting, anger and resentment towards disabled people.

There is then the matter of the language used in the article. Isn't it totally unacceptable to call a group of people "Feral", especially when their issues may not be any fault of their own?

The author clearly fails to take into account that some disabled people may have issues with bodily functions, for example, continence. Again, it would be my contention that by displaying this level of ignorance in print he is being discriminatory. Imagine, for example, if he beseeched readers to avoid all second-hand cars previously owned by Asians "because they smelt of curry"? I hasten to add that is not what I am saying, I am merely presenting an example.

Further, in the article, he writes the following "One dealer amused the Hell out of us...." and then describes a car that required a full replacement interior due to the smell, but further states that when the registration document arrived the dealer recognised the owner's location and contacted them about the smell!

I shall leave aside the small matter of Data Protection breaches hinted there, and focus instead on the fact that [removed by moderator] has written that his friends, colleagues, acquaintances found disability amusing in no small measure and that by writing this he is encouraging other dealers to do the same! Luckily the new V5C doesn't list previous owners, but be aware!


I am astonished that the editor of this magazine, allowed such an article to be published, never mind continued to employ such a writer.

I would have thought that in the 21st Century, views on Disability may have been slightly more enlightened, sadly it appears not and that this writer, and by association, the editor, magazine publisher and the CEO, all derive humour from disability and are happy to publish these views and, by suggesting that Motability cars are free of charge, encourage animosity towards disabled people.

I am hoping that both never work in any form of journalism again. In fact, I'd go further, in my previous occupations to serve and protect the public of this country, if I had made such a scurrilous statement I would have been dismissed *without* my pension! And I believe strongly that the editor, should be treated in the same manner. This wasn't just a mistake, this was Gross Negligence.

I would welcome your support from the community here, as I intend to help my friends, cancelling any and all subscriptions with Great Magazines Plc, writing to the CEO of the group.

Replies

  • SeanchaiSeanchai Posts: 91Member Pioneering
    This article is lazy journalism at least and abuse of disabled people at worst. .  Does the article mention that disabled people pay all their motability towards the lease of a car....a car or van that they may have to pay for with hundreds or thousands of pounds up front and over the course of a three year lease can cost over £3000 a year . With a return of £250 if the car is in good condition after three years . If adaptations are required for the vehicle ( which are paid for by the disabled person ) the vehicle must be returned to how it was before the lease started. Which can also cost thousands of pounds . 
    I,m very angry at this article by such a well known magazine . If every disabled person stopped buying this magazine then they would not be long in changing their dreadful attitude to disabled people .
    I will also write to the editor and complain about this article . I thought all the journalists were well versed in such things as " free vehicles" for disabled people . It's hard enough being disabled without such articles in well known magazines.
    Thank you for bringing this article to our attention Vi .
    I just wonder why the journalists name is deleted on this site. I thought Scope would stand up for disabled people and publish the journalists name  so we can all complain about him and his misguided views. 
  • WaylayWaylay Posts: 868Member Pioneering
    This is horrendous! Do you have address for CEO?
  • KG100KG100 Posts: 178Member Pioneering
    I've noticed that in the last few years that people have turned against disabled people who have motability cars.
    For some reason they've become "free cars" that are paid for by the taxpayer.
    I think it all started when there was a story about it in one of the national papers by a well known journalist a few years a go. 
  • KG100KG100 Posts: 178Member Pioneering
    I think if you have a motability car then it's best to keep quiet about it in case of jealousy and resentment. 
  • SeanchaiSeanchai Posts: 91Member Pioneering
    Sad to see that anyone can be jealous of a disabled person  :(
  • Vi_KingVi_King Posts: 6Member Listener
    Hello everyone,

    I must apologise. I must have seemed like a Troll, simply posting a contentious post and then disappearing. I'm sorry. I am not, never have been, and hopefully, never will be, a Troll!

    Thank you so much to everyone who replied to the thread, and to all of you who read the thread but didn't reply, I appreciate that sometimes it can be very difficult when faced with "Yet another campaigning disabled person"! Maybe, we sometimes suffer from "Indignation fatigue"? :)

    As far as the article and the magazine/publisher are concerned, I'm going to have to disappoint you here, hopefully just temporarily........let's just say that the torpedoes are in the water and streaking towards their target?

    Personally, and this is just a personal comment, I'd like to see the author dismissed. My reasoning is fairly simple. He is not a trained/qualified journalist and has been using this space in the magazine as a personal soapbox for a long time now.

    I'll give you a quick example. I don't know how many of you know anything about the Highways England Traffic Officers? They are the men and women who (bravely) patrol our motorways helping to keep the traffic moving safely. Their main role, having taken over 70%+ of policing duties on the motorways, is to help us poor frustrated motorists. Several of them have been killed over the past couple of years in he line of duty, whilst several others have been seriously injured,, and yet, bizarrely, they are better trained then Roads Policing Officers!

    When you break down on a motorway or have crashed, for example, it's likely to be them that attend, and trust me, on a busy motorway, at night, in the howling gales and pouring rain for which this country is infamous, you will thank them profoundly when they position their big heavy 4x4 behind your vehicle to protect you and yours, regardless of race, colour, creed etc, in all weathers. And when you see those flashing beacons go on, it feels like *Rescue*!

    But, the author mentioned above despises them and has oft written vile comments about them too, always from a point of total ignorance.

    My father once told me that I could hit back at someone who had caused me injury or violence but I *must* never interfere with their ability to earn a living. Luckily the author sells second-hand cars so his income is safe, I just want to see him never write another article for a publication again.

    Finally, wouldn't it be far better if publishers asked disabled people to write articles when they pertain to disability?

    Or is that me being too simplistic and naive?

    Love to you all, keep on fighting and don't let them grind you down!
  • Vi_KingVi_King Posts: 6Member Listener
    :D :D :D


    Oh that is *SO* HILARIOUS!!!!


    I have just noticed that a "Moderator" has edited the author's name from my initial posting......hahahahaha!!

    I don't know who it was but you really do need to think before moderating.

    You have edited something that isn't just in the public domain anyway but is actually *PUBLISHED*. That means that under the Libel/Slander laws of this country, this site is no longer bound to protect this individual's identity.

    How do I know this?

    Because I am an *Administrator* on several forums (?fora) and have actually undertaken the necessary legal training to do that role.

    Don't get me wrong, this isn't a personal attack, nor is it an attack on the moderators on this fine site, so please don't me wrong, but please, please think before moderating? Rule of thumb: ask yourself this simple question "Could that information be found, in this country, within three (3) mouse clicks?" If the answer is yes then there is no need to moderate the comment. That lovely advice came from an eminent QC (Queen's Counsel), so it's pretty accurate!

    I'm not going to break your rules here by repeating the name, but please, in future, use some common sense when editing. As an admin it's one of my most time-consuming jobs, re-editing and apologising to posters due to over-enthusiastic moderators.
  • Vi_KingVi_King Posts: 6Member Listener
    Seanchai said:
    This article is lazy journalism at least and abuse of disabled people at worst. .  Does the article mention that disabled people pay all their motability towards the lease of a car....a car or van that they may have to pay for with hundreds or thousands of pounds up front and over the course of a three year lease can cost over £3000 a year . With a return of £250 if the car is in good condition after three years . If adaptations are required for the vehicle ( which are paid for by the disabled person ) the vehicle must be returned to how it was before the lease started. Which can also cost thousands of pounds . 
    I,m very angry at this article by such a well known magazine . If every disabled person stopped buying this magazine then they would not be long in changing their dreadful attitude to disabled people .
    I will also write to the editor and complain about this article . I thought all the journalists were well versed in such things as " free vehicles" for disabled people . It's hard enough being disabled without such articles in well known magazines.
    Thank you for bringing this article to our attention Vi .
    I just wonder why the journalists name is deleted on this site. I thought Scope would stand up for disabled people and publish the journalists name  so we can all complain about him and his misguided views. 


    Hi Seanchai,

    Thank you for your reply.

    No, the author Ward's off any notion that we have to pay an advance payment, often into £1000's, especially if you require a large vehicle for a wheelchair for example. That includes just a run-of-the-mill estate car now.

    Do you know the funniest thing about this whole incident? Motability had already changed the hand-back system. I know, because on Tuesday I handed back my car from them.

    In the past, the hand-back process ranged from the salesperson inspecting the car with white gloves looking for dust on the dashboard, to a cursory glance when they opened the car and started the engine.

    BUT....Perhaps now that the "Good Condition Bonus" has doubled to £500, there is a proper Checklist that your car undergoes, and trust me, if you want that £500 you'd be best off investing in getting a professional valet before returning the car!

    Example: My friend had put a *TINY* scuff on a door mirror cap when trying to squeeze the car through a narrow driveway gate. It wouldn't polish out, so I bought the correct touch-in paint, rubbed down the damage and used the correct method to smooth/blend-in the new paint......and it was spotted because it is a known damage "hotspot" and was marked down as an"inappropriate repair method"!

    I was told that most Motability cars are now sold *before* return! In other words, because of the model we chose, there was some Steve out there who sells second-hand cars who possibly has contacts at Motability and had already done a deal for that car.

    Oh, and here's the thing that might shock most of you: I contacted Motability about the article.

    This was their response......





    .........yeah, not a jot! Why should they worry? They get *your* money, and they get the money back at auction, so what do they care if a lazy car salesman writes an ignorant diatribe in a magazine? After all, as the richest organisation of its type in the *World*, the CEO will still get his big fat bonus regardless.

    Maybe I should just go back to my nest and the rest of my feral smelly family and stop feeling outraged by this?


  • Vi_KingVi_King Posts: 6Member Listener
    Hi folks!

    Just me again, apologising again for my enforced absence.

    For anyone interested here's a quick update.

    My local MP emailed the CEO of Bauer Media and did receive what appeared to be quite a genuine apology, along with an assurance that a review of editorial procedures was being undertaken to prevent such errors from happening in the future.

    The magazine in question, Car Mechanics, did indeed publish an apology, on page three of the magazine, and gave it some space and didn't hide it away deep within the magazine like some may have done, so all credit to them.

    If I had one tiny gripe about the apology published, it would be the way the editor was very quick to distance himself from the comments and views that had been published. Hmm, now, correct me if I am wrong here, but unless clearly stated, then isn't it the role of an editor to ensure that what is published reflects your core values and those of the owners of the publication? I'll hold my hands up, at least I would if it wasn't for my disablity (!), and state for the record that I have no experience of journalism except for being on the other side of an interview etc, so my perceptions of the role of an editor are based upon the media portrayals.

    One other thing that I did notice was that the contributor wasn't published in this month's edition. Now that may have been planned. Perhaps he was on holiday. I don't know. Speaking personally, I'd ike to think that they have decided not to continue publishing his views, and as I have cancelled my subscriptions and refused an offer of a free subscription (I don't have a price I'm afraid to say, my principles are not for sale. Ever) I don't think I'll ever find out if he does return to the magazine.

    In closing, I'd just like to thank all those who contributed to this thread, and to the team at Scope for providing this platform. I *promise* I will visit again, and try to contribute in a positive way. Unfortunately, my disability is such that I have to rely upon someone else to type for me and my cognitive abilities are diminishing by the day (hour in some cases!), so my visits will be infrequent (stop cheering at the back, thank you!).

    My very best wishes to you all, and don't ever give up the good fight! Life may get you down sometimes, but please, always remember that no matter how bad life may be, it's *always* better than the alternative!

    Peace out man!
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Posts: 4,030Administrator Scope community team
    Hi @Vi_King and thank you for updating us about this, I'm glad you managed to get it resolved :)
    Chloe
    Online Community Officer
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