World Press Freedom Day Today

Picked up this interesting report from the Canadian Press (newswire; published in Toronto Star) on the National Press Club of Canada giving their Press Freedom Day award to ex-editors of the CMA Journal (Canadian Medical Association. Abuse them here and here). The two people in question, Dr. John Hoey and Anne Marie Todkill, were fired in a fuss over an article they published critical of privacy invasions of women using emergency contraception. The journal was (trying to) report on pharmacists allegedly going too far in collecting personal information (including sexual history) on morning-after pill users. The publishers, and their friends in the Canadian Pharmacists Association, didn’t like the sound of this. 15 of the 19 editorial board members also resigned (hey, it could happen to any organisation!)

In a final insult, they can’t even discuss the issue: Hoey and Todkill are not free to air their side of the story. Some months before their dismissal they were required to sign confidentiality agreements as a condition of employment and the CMA holding company that owns the journal is holding them to those constraints. But now the world is discussing it. So screw them 😉

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