Shalom Life | April 18, 2015

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.

Long Island Students Caught Wearing Incredibly anti-Semitic Shirts While Drinking Underage Long Island Students Caught Wearing Incredibly anti-Semitic Shirts While Drinking Underage Trending400 Torontonians Join Jews From Across the Globe in Poland on March of the Living 400 Torontonians Join Jews From Across the Globe in Poland on March of the Living TrendingIsraeli Mother Outraged After Three-Year-Old Daughter Sent Home Wearing Yellow Star Of David Israeli Mother Outraged After Three-Year-Old Daughter Sent Home Wearing Yellow Star Of David Trending
 

Netanyahu, Amy Schumer, Sarah Koenig and Others Make TIME's 100 Most Influential People

April 17, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
Netanyahu, Amy Schumer, Sarah Koenig and Others Make TIME's 100 Most Influential People

Kanye West, Kim Kardashian, Diane von Furstenberg, Kevin Hart, Lorne Michaels, and many more make the 12th annual list

Read More

Israeli Defense Firm Creates System to Detect Terror Tunnels

April 17, 2015 | By JNS.org
Israeli Defense Firm Creates System to Detect Terror Tunnels

Elbit Systems developed the new tunnel-detection system together with the Israeli Defense Ministry and other partners in Israel

Read More

Rabbis, Mental Health Professionals Holding Conference to Support Young LGBT Jews

April 17, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
Rabbis, Mental Health Professionals Holding Conference to Support Young LGBT Jews

Conference to be held in Israel this Sunday will bring Orthodox rabbinical community, and the therapeutic community, together in support of LGBT teens

Read More

Kim Kardashian and Kanye West’s Trip to Israel Cost Them $1 Million

April 17, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
Kim Kardashian and Kanye West’s Trip to Israel Cost Them $1 Million

Mind you, they were only there for a couple days

Read More

Hamas to Gazans: Kidnap More Israelis

April 17, 2015 | By JNS.org
Hamas to Gazans: Kidnap More Israelis

"Our men, our women, our children [should] always think of kidnapping your soldiers and settlers, wherever they may be"

Read More

You Could Be The Next Goldstar Beer Taste Tester. Seriously.

April 17, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
You Could Be The Next Goldstar Beer Taste Tester. Seriously.

The company is need of a new chief beer tester, and is turning to the Israeli public for help

Read More

The Kosher Switch May Not Be So Kosher After All

April 17, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
The Kosher Switch May Not Be So Kosher After All

Marketed as a way to keep kosher during the Shabbat, many rabbinical sources fear the Kosher Switch may rely on a Jewish loophole to keep "kosher"

Read More

David Blatt Has NBA's Cavaliers Surging at Playoff Time

April 17, 2015 | By Bob Jacob/Cleveland Jewish News/JNS.org
David Blatt Has NBA's Cavaliers Surging at Playoff Time

"It's a great time to be in the city of Cleveland," says the Israeli Head Coach, whose team squares off against the Celtics on Sunday

Read More

More Headlines