Don’t ask ’em no questions, they’ll tell you no lies


Exasperated, the 253 locked-out employees of the Journal de Montréal briefly waded into the newsroom on Wednesday afternoon during a protest to mark the six-month anniversary of their labour conflict. They protested noisily but peacefully for a few minutes.


The union members stayed in the building for a few minutes before leaving of their accord. There were no reports of untoward behaviour by the union. However, some protesters were roughed up by security guards: a young female journalist was tossed to the ground and a reporter from the sports section was grabbed by the throat.

That’s from a report by Rue Frontenac. If you didn’t know it already, Rue Frontenac is staffed by the very same locked-out union members who burst into their former offices at the Journal de Montréal in the incident mentioned above. They’ve done a generally commendable job with the website since their labour conflict began—in fact, it’s one of my regular reads. But the story above risks undoing a lot of that good work.

The problem is that there’s video of the security guards “roughing up” the sports reporter. Here, see for yourself:

The guard doesn’t seem to have much of a hold on the reporter when he suddenly throws up his arms and makes like he’s being choked. Then, a photographer quickly graps a shot of the “assault” and, within seconds, everything’s back to normal.

It’s touchy enough to have a news outlet reporting on its job action. It probably shouldn’t be done at all. But to knowingly run a staged photo of a purported news event that involves you? Well, that’s pretty much as unethical as it gets.


Don’t ask ’em no questions, they’ll tell you no lies

  1. I especially loved the expression on the union members' face, once assured the shot was taken.

    Very sad.

  2. Rogerio Barbosa and the sports reporter should resign.

  3. You might have questioned their rationality the moment they chose to take strike action in an industry that is in total collapse.

    • You do know the difference between a strike and a lock-out, right?

      • missed that, thanks for the correction

  4. Hilarious. Great post Wherry.

    Next time I'm they'll make sure their cameras are the only ones present.

  5. Hilarious. Great post Wherry.

    I think in the modern news media (a la Dan Rather) they justify this sort of thing as "fake but accurate", which translates loosely as "fake but what we wish the reality to be".

    • Posted by Mr. Gohier, not Mr. Wherry.

      • Ah…oops. Great post Gohier.

  6. There's a good reason to keep them locked out forever. Obviously they are very poor and unethical journalists.

  7. Somehow it makes me feel like the incident has been staged. They do that. Haven't heard of it being done in Canada, but there are others who does.