Grimsby Town Football Club has noted comments on social media relating to the access of Cleethorpes Chronicle to the Manager. That newspaper has not been denied access. It has, however, been asked to follow the procedures laid down in our medial protocol for an interview with him. None of our other media partners have difficulty in complying with this.
The Grimsby Telegraph and Radio Humberside do have one to one access at press conferences included in their broadcast/media sponsorship agreements. We have in the past had complaints about the Chronicle’s unrestricted and unmonitored access to the Manager.
We were happy in it’s infancy to allow the Chronicle some latitude regarding media access as we were supporting a new local venture. However, the Chronicle has now been in existence for nine years and we take the view that there should be a level playing field between all our media partners. It is a commercial organisation and not to do so would be unfair to the others. We are not saying that the Chronicle should pay the equivalent of the others but we are under a duty to protect our revenue streams.
Two Directors did offer to meet with Nigel Lowther to discuss this matter and that offer remains open. We were not prepared to succumb to the threat that unless access on the Chronicle’s terms were agreed an adverse article would appear in their newspaper. We are also not intending to release the contents of private emails which the Chronicle appears to have done to a social media source. Private emails between commercial organisations should stay private.
The Chronicle will still have access to the pre and post match press conferences. It has been invited to the forthcoming press photo shoot and was invited to the press event at the launch of the excellent wall at the rear of the Pontoon stand which it did not attend.
We value our relationships with the local media and are aware of the benefits of them both to the club and the media organisations. We do not wish to jeopardise them but merely wish to be fair and even handed to them all.