stooges of the Kremlin

Wings Over Scotland


Archive for the ‘scottish politics’


A significant debate 333

Posted on August 02, 2018 by

For those of you who didn’t catch the media review section of today’s John Beattie show on Radio Scotland, where the Wings/YouTube copyright case was discussed at length, here’s a compilation of the relevant sections. It’s quite the listen.

(John Beattie, BBC Radio Scotland, 2 August 2018)
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The BBC’s official statement is below in full.

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Please disregard our previous message 144

Posted on August 02, 2018 by

Well, this story moves fast.

What that means is that, at least for now, our YouTube channel is back (Back! BACK!), minus the 13 videos complained about by the BBC on copyright grounds. The situation is once again that Corporation has 14 business days to file a formal court challenge, and unless it does so the channel will be reinstated in full.

Meanwhile, here’s how the Streisand Effect works.

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For the attention of the Director General 119

Posted on August 02, 2018 by

The sounds of the silenced 323

Posted on August 01, 2018 by

Before we were so rudely interrupted, we were about to write a little more about the issues around the BBC’s takedown of this site’s YouTube channel. Because while we got a very respectable five-and-a-half minutes on Good Morning Scotland earlier today, you never have the time on radio or TV to say everything you want to.

Incidentally, we get the impression – nothing more solid than that – from a number of sources that BBC Scotland are somewhat out of the loop over the whole affair, and the impetus to silence Wings has actually come from London, which is slightly scarier. But aside from that, there are a number of really rather disturbing aspects to the situation.

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Silence will fall 75

Posted on August 01, 2018 by

Well, that’s curious. No sooner had I got back home from the BBC Radio studio in Bath after going on today’s Good Morning Scotland to discuss the Corporation’s closing down of my YouTube channel than I found a new email from YouTube in my inbox.

No explanation of any kind was offered for the decision – we can’t imagine what has led YouTube to conclude all by itself that we don’t have the “necessary rights” – and it appears to let the BBC entirely off the hook from having to decide whether to launch a court case or concede the fair use of the clips.

We’ll be investigating further to see what we can find out.

The dirty baker’s dozen 425

Posted on July 30, 2018 by

So this morning, four days after our entire YouTube channel was deleted at the behest of the BBC, and after days of wrestling with YouTube’s shambolic robot-staffed admin maze, we finally managed to get an email out of them with the full list of what the BBC had complained about.

(If you should ever find yourself in a similar situation, we can recommend contacting @TeamYouTube on Twitter, who appear to be actual human people and can eventually prod the robots into action.)

The signatory was a London-based BBC lawyer, who’d plucked 13 videos apparently at random from the hundreds on our channel and decided to whine about them (citing US copyright law, rather than UK) up to four and a half years later.

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Big Auntie Is Watching You update 193

Posted on July 29, 2018 by

So what we only suspected is now official. In a response to The National, the BBC have confirmed that they were behind the termination of this site’s YouTube channel.

We have to admit, that “irrespective of the political views” line is a classic.

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Regular context update 42

Posted on July 29, 2018 by

Large sections of the Scottish media today trot out Variant #26 of the fortnightly “NHS SCOTLAND CRISIS!” story, namely the targets for A&E waiting times. The BBC, for example, goes with this:

While the Sunday Mail runs a remarkably similar piece except with more Anas Sarwar.

And that’s all fair enough – it’s a legitimate news story. But what’s really odd about it is that both of the articles leave out what you might imagine would be a rather crucial piece of information.

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When we’re gone 203

Posted on July 29, 2018 by

As we’re writing this, our YouTube channel remains dead. We’re still trying to navigate through YouTube’s awful maze of robotic guards to reach a human being, and while at least two newspapers – The National and the Scotsman – have asked the BBC for a comment, none has been forthcoming.

The mainstream media’s attacks on this site in the last couple of years have included getting our Twitter account shut down in 2016, getting me arrested, having all of Wings’ electronic equipment confiscated by the police and now killing our YouTube channel full of crucial documentary evidence, most of which isn’t available anywhere else. (On top of an endless catalogue of smear stories and hatchet jobs, of course.)

Now, we’re not planning on going anywhere, but in the face of such a concerted and increasingly sinister assault aimed at silencing us, we also can’t make any guarantees that Wings itself will continue to survive. WordPress may prove as fragile in the face of malice as Twitter and YouTube have.

So in case we fall victim to another unexpected technical/censorship catastrophe, or suddenly commit “suicide”, you might want to strengthen the rest of the team.

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The state flexes its muscles 286

Posted on July 28, 2018 by

We happened to be looking at a couple of old articles this morning, and noticed that some of them had blank spaces where videos should be.

We didn’t think much of it at first, because people do sometimes delete old videos or shut down their accounts, but when we checked one of them we discovered it was hosted on the Wings Over Scotland channel.

Or rather, it USED to be, because our YouTube channel isn’t there any more.

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Never his freedom 81

Posted on July 28, 2018 by

Not down with the sickness 264

Posted on July 26, 2018 by

An alert reader sent us a piece of interesting follow-up info to yesterday’s piece on NHS Scotland costs. Because comparable figures for NHS England are available too, and they make for surprising reading.

These are the Scottish figures for medicine costs at list price, ie before any negotiated discounts that the health service is able to obtain:

The population of England, at 55 million, is just over 10 times that of Scotland (5.4m). So one would imagine that its like-for-like costs would come in at around £12 billion.

But they don’t.

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