As I pointed out a few hours ago, it's fairly likely that Stuart Campbell broke some law or other yesterday by sending me an unsolicited, highly abusive email, calling me a "wretched little c**t" and a "pathetic, snivelling coward".
This was not part of some ongoing correspondence - it was a bolt from the blue, and the first email I had received from him for nine years. However, I made clear that I did not intend to pursue the matter. Since then, I have had to wade through a sea of drivel from his apologists: "Grow up, James! You must have led a sheltered life, James! You're so bitter and twisted, James! You could have just sworn back at him, James! Be a man, James!"
Well, I now expect to hear no more of that nonsense ever again, because I have just received a lengthy email dripping with menace from his legal representative (a man who I had previously assumed to be a friend) implying that action may be taken by Campbell against me. Why? Because he doesn't like a comment that was posted on this blog by Douglas Clark, and rather than do what normal people would do and just post a response (it's not as if the guy doesn't have a platform) he wants to censor it out of existence, and if I refuse to censor it out of existence he wants to get revenge. Not against the person who actually expressed the views, but against me, who did not. Don't anyone ever tell me that this isn't a small, cowardly man pursuing a nasty, bitter personal vendetta. Until I get some sleep, the only action I intend to take is to post the entire correspondence so far and allow people to make their own minds up. The only part I'll leave out is the quote of Douglas Clark's comment - ironically if I include that Campbell will probably claim it as "defamation".
To be abundantly clear, Campbell and his friends have been peddling a number of falsehoods today to prepare the groundwork for this stunt. They have suggested that my statement that I had turned on pre-moderation of comments amounted to an "admission" that I had "actively passed" Douglas Clark's comment. That is categorically untrue. It was auto-published *before* I turned pre-moderation on. They have claimed that Campbell asked me to delete the comment. As far as I can see, he did not - he sent me an abusive email, but he didn't bother to explain what he was actually angry about or ask me to take any specific action. Pretty much the only thing he did was call me a "c**t". Therefore the claim that I "refused" to censor Douglas Clark's comment is also patently untrue.
Hi James. I wanted to let you know that I am just about to send an email to you from my work account and to explain that the reason for sending it so late in the day is the urgency to things. I didn't want to send it without prior comment or letting you know it's on its way - you'll understand when you see it, I hope and I hope too that we'll be able to get the issue raised resolved.
OK, no problem, I'll look out for it.