Shalom Life | July 26, 2014

CBC Reporter Neil MacDonald Closes Twitter Account

Senior Washington Correspondent signs off under pressure

By: Mike Fegelman

Published: February 10th, 2012 in News » World

CBC Reporter Neil MacDonald Closes Twitter Account
Since HonestReporting Canada’s inception in 2003, we have been raising serious questions about CBC reporter Neil MacDonald’s reporting of events affecting Israel and the Middle East.

We have gone on record, time and again with CBC management to express our view that Macdonald's reporting is not consistent with the CBC's policy guidelines which calls for accuracy, fairness, and journalistic neutrality.

MacDonald’s continued exploitation of his position at the CBC was on full public display in the following tweet he authored on his CBC Twitter account on January 5:

One can only imagine what Neil MacDonald had in mind when writing this tweet. Was he implying that Israelis frequently shoot at either Palestinians, Egyptians, Jordanians, Lebanese, or Syrians? We will leave it to our readers to decide if MacDonald’s skilful ambiguity imbued his statement with an abundance of insinuation while preventing a precise and definitive interpretation. Nevertheless, HonestReporting Canada contacted senior editors at CBC News on January 30 asking if this tweet fell in line with the CBC’s Journalistic Standards and Practices. In our correspondence, we asked rhetorically: “Why do we think MacDonald’s judgements are tainted? This tweet seems to be a pretty explicit example as to why sometimes we question his reporting and his objectivity.”

We are pleased to report that several days after we filed our complaint with the CBC, MacDonald’s Twitter account has been officially closed. On February 2, MacDonald posted the following farewell message to his CBC Twitter account:


This swansong portrays MacDonald as a victim, paints his critics as attackers, and implicates all of CBC in his problematic behaviour. But despite his vigorous assertion to the contrary, we suspect that MacDonald’s superiors brought our concerns (or at least the concerns of the “CBC’s detractors” as Mr. MacDonald has put it) to his attention. Indeed, irrespective of MacDonald’s claim that he’s “voluntarily closing (his) Twitter account” on his own initiative and was not prompted to do so, his cancelled account means that at least on this social media platform, his “ammunition for attacks” against Israel are now in short supply

While MacDonald has “voluntarily closed” his Twitter account, we have yet to hear if our national broadcaster views Macdonald's actions as having crossed the bounds of acceptable journalistic conduct. Pending the CBC’s response, we are very pleased to have defused one more weapon in MacDonald’s arsenal.

Mike Fegelman is the Executive Director, HonestReporting Canada.

Ron Dermer to CNN: You Do Your Viewers A Disservice [VIDEO] Ron Dermer to CNN: You Do Your Viewers A Disservice [VIDEO] TrendingOp-Ed: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan – With Friends Like This Who Needs Enemies? Op-Ed: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan – With Friends Like This Who Needs Enemies? TrendingSenior Hamas Officials Are Living the Good Life Senior Hamas Officials Are Living the Good Life Trending
 

Lena Dunham and Andy Samberg Team Up For HBO Mockumentary

July 25, 2014 | By Ashley Baylen
Lena Dunham and Andy Samberg Team Up For HBO Mockumentary

The 'Girls' and 'Brooklyn Nine-Nine' stars will appear in an upcoming sports mockumentary.

Read More

Joan Rivers Staunchly Defends Israel, Insults Selena Gomez [VIDEO]

July 25, 2014 | By Ashley Baylen
Joan Rivers Staunchly Defends Israel, Insults Selena Gomez [VIDEO]

The controversial comedian slammed Gomez for her #PrayForGaza tweet

Read More

The Ten Best Seinfeld Memes

July 25, 2014 | By Caitlin Marceau & Daniel Koren
The Ten Best Seinfeld Memes

We look at some of the most entertaining memes inspired by the iconic TV show

Read More

Jesse Eisenberg Feels Safe In Israel, Calls It "A Wonderful Country"

July 25, 2014 | By Ashley Ramnarain
Jesse Eisenberg Feels Safe In Israel, Calls It "A Wonderful Country"

The 'Social Network' star recently visited for a Q&A at Beit Lessin Theatre

Read More

James Franco Outs His Brother Dave, Tells Internet He's Dating Zac Efron

July 25, 2014 | By Ashley Ramnarain
James Franco Outs His Brother Dave, Tells Internet He's Dating Zac Efron

The 'Neighbors' co-stars are apparently in a serious relationship, according to a very unreliable gossip site

Read More

Guess what Canada? Daniel Radcliffe is Stuck Here Due To Visa Issues

July 25, 2014 | By Ashley Ramnarain
Guess what Canada? Daniel Radcliffe is Stuck Here Due To Visa Issues

Torontonians should be on the look out for the former 'Harry Potter' star

Read More

Shia LaBeouf Arrives in Court For 'Cabaret' Incident

July 25, 2014 | By Ashley Ramnarain
Shia LaBeouf Arrives in Court For 'Cabaret' Incident

The former 'Transformers' actor appeared unshaven in a suit to face charges for criminal trespass, disorderly conduct and harassment

Read More

Cupcake Truck Calls Israelis "Zionist Pigs"

July 25, 2014 | By Hugh Holt
Cupcake Truck Calls Israelis "Zionist Pigs"

New York-based Cupcake Crew, a finalist on Cupcake Wars, tweet some rather offensive comments

Read More

More Headlines