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Union reps meet Football League chief over journalist bans

Karl OystonUnion representatives protesting over journalists being banned from football clubs have held a meeting with a Football League communications chief  over the issue.

John Nagle, the League’s head of communications, and the NUJ had what it called a “constructive discussion” on the issue, which has affected journalists at several regional press titles in recent years.

The League is responsible for the administration of England’s second, third and fourth divisions – representing a total of 72 clubs.

Football League clubs in the past year to have issued bans or restrictions to regional journalists include Blackpool, Notts County and Swindon Town.

In September, Blackpool chairman Karl Oyston, pictured above left, admitted he had restricted local daily newspaper The Gazette’s access to the club for commercial reasons, stating he saw it as a “competitor” to the club’s own official website.

The admission came after months of wranglings between the paper and the club, which saw a reporter and photographer locked out of a press conference and football writer Will Watt call for the Football Association to intervene in the practice of media bans within the sport.

In the case of Notts County, the club was forced to commit a U-turn in August, hours after banning the Nottingham Post and BBC Radio Nottignham from attending its matches.

The rescinded ban was initially issued after both organisations reported comments made by County’s manager Ricardo Moniz during his pre-match press conference.

Earlier in 2015, Swindon Town barred the Swindon Advertiser from its weekly pre-match press conferences – before deciding in July to scrap the convention altogether.

The Football League has been asked for a comment on the meeting.


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  • February 15, 2016 at 3:43 pm

    Ironic that the owner of Swindon , owns a newspaper himself !

    The NUJ faff about with entry issues at entertainment venues whilst the industry folds around them.

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  • February 15, 2016 at 7:59 pm

    More criticism of the NUJ for criticism’s sake. It should be involved in ALL issues affecting its members and the quality of journalism in general.

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