In an apparent attempt to exact revenge, a non-practicing lawyer-cum-real estate agent on Christmas Eve posted to his personal blog the name, photo, address, phone number, Twitter account, and even personal habits of the publisher, and much the same and more, including Facebook account, spouse name, and email address, of reporters and other staff members who work for a local New York newspaper that posted the names and addresses of gun permit holders in Westchester and Rockland Counties. The publication of gun permit holders came in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Connecticut earlier this month.
Janet Hasson, publisher of the The Journal News, a subsidiary of Gannett Newspapers, (which also publishes USA Today,) has had her name, photo, home address, phone number, and even links to photos of the exterior and interior of her home via a real estate website published, and this information is now linked to by several radical right wing blogs and even Tech Crunch, a popular mainstream technology news blog.
“Janet Hasson herself is married with one child, and her personal interests, as culled from her credit card records, are noted below…” the author wrote, posting a screenshot that mentions her apparent love of baseball, travel, gardening, home decorating, etc.
The writer added, “Janet, you have a great Christmas Eve.”
He also posted an exterior screenshot of her home (apparently) via Google Maps.
For another employee, he writes:
“Miss Royle’s married name is Lambert. She lives in White Plains and here is her Facebook page complete with pictures of her and her kids. Hello Sanctimony,” adding, “Drives a red convertible,” and, “Family photo,” with links of images to both.
For another employee, apparently it was important to include this bit of information: “From Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.”
In total, about 50 Gannett and/or Journal News employees’ personal information was published, some also having their email addresses posted along with other contact information. Hasson is the only one whose photo was published.
The link has been reposted on Twitter hundreds of times.
All this in response to The Journal News’ publication of an interactive map that included the names, addresses, and phone numbers of gun permit holders in Westchester and Rockland counties, areas just north of New York City, which the paper covers. The Journal News obtained the information, which is public, via freedom of information requests.
Of course, gun nuts were furious and have excoriated the paper and its owner, Gannett, throughout the conservative blogosphere all week.
Radical right wing blogs and people on social media sites like Twitter demanded revenge and retribution, and apparently they have gotten it, thanks to this one writer who chose to publish the information. Its publication may be legal, but certainly is not “ethical journalism,” at least in our opinion.
These are the people who claim to be “responsible citizens” and who claim to have a “right” to gun ownership.
This is the Tea Party, the radical right wing, conservatives, Republicans, who now think we should roll over and allow them even more killing machines, because they act so “responsibly.”
People the world over were laughing at America. Now, they just think we’re crazed animals.
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