UK gagging orders
The media in the UK has currently been attempting to reveal details of an alleged affair with Manchester Untied footballer Ryan Giggs and Imogen Thomas. A super-injunction or gagging order was put in place some time ago.
The footballer at the centre of the row was granted a superinjunction to silence Imogen after he made claims that she tried to blackmail him for her silence. This meant that although he was not named she was. Her reputation seemed not to matter and she was therefore unable to defend herself against the charges of blackmail.
Today the situation seems have become uncontrollable.
Early today, 23rd May 2011, a UK High Court judge upheld the gagging order. He refused to lift the gagging order after a legal challenge by the UK tabloid, The Sun.
Within a short time Liberal Democrat MP John Hemming finally revealed to the world who the footballer at the centre of the row is, namely Manchester United's number one player Ryan Giggs. John Hemming had been pushing for the lifting of this gagging order for some time.
Giggs Maynot be everyone's number one Man U player, but he is mine. He has played consistently well over his years at Man U and in the past has been a credit to them.
Does today's revelation mean all that has changed?.
Well it should not. High ranking politicians and more have affairs and scandal. For some it spells the end of their careers, but for others it does not. Whether or not a scandal is bad news depends on what the scandal is and how it is handled by the person or person's involved.
My personal opinion is that if Ryan had just let the press have a field day, the news by now would have run its course. That may sound harsh but look what has happened now.
This weekend, in defiance of legal proceedings Giggs started against Twitter, twitter has been full of his name. Having demanded the name of people who hold twitter accounts bandying his name about, the world and its wife began tweeting his name. In true I am Spartacus style, the world of Twitter was as one.
MP John Hemming said in Parliament that, "With about 75,000 people having named Ryan Giggs on Twitter, it is obviously impracticable to imprison them all." Yes I guess that could be true.
So where does Ryan Giggs and gagging orders in general go from here?
For Ryan Giggs there is a wife and children to consider. I have no doubt that he and his wife have been through their testing time already. His kids may be a different matter. I hope they had some warning before today's events. A Scottish newspaper had printed an obvious image of Ryan yesterday and so it was obvious the gagging was going to fail in the near future.
As for gagging orders in the UK, they can be so necessary. The problem seems to have been that, instead of protecting those they were designed to protect, they have been a rich person's or celebrity's tool for covering their infidelities. The majority have been by men.
Most people care little about such affairs these days. Ryan Giggs has caused much more interest by trying to gag the news than if it had just run its course.
You can argue that his private affairs are just that, and should not be public gossip. However, with the spread of the Internet, and changes in how the media operate, it is hard to stop such "juicy" gossip.
The best course of action would have been for Ryan to play fair with his wife and family in the first place. If he had not played away, so to speak, none of this would have happened.
However, we are all human and such things do happen. Now that it is out in the open perhaps he, his family and the media can put this story to rest.
Last weekend Manchester Untied were crowned Kings of the UK premiership for another year. This could mean that the timing of this leak is favourable. By the time the football season in the UK begins again in earnest, it will be old news and old hat.
Having said that the coming weekend, of 28th and 29th May 2011,sees the final throes of Manchester United's victory run. Perhaps this will be the biggest test yet for this footballer.
Author's Note: I did not publish this hub lightly. However, after careful consideration, and the amount of media coverage revealing the name today, it seemed worth debating.
Adsensehas been automatically disabled on this Hub, although I have no idea why, but it was still worth creating.