A storm of complaints has brewed online thanks to Charlie Brooker, Stephen Fry and our own Mr Brown. Over 800 people contacted the Press Complaints Commission about a rather foot-in-mouth article published by Jan Moir of the Daily Mail.
The article comparing Stephen Gately’s death to “nothing more than an unfortunate mishap on a holiday weekend, like a broken teacup in the rented cottage” alarmed more than a few people. Continuing, it seemed to express that the death was likely to be suspicious, despite the coroner’s report stating otherwise, because of Gateley’s sexuality.
In a later rebuke Moir said “Some people, particularly in the gay community, have been upset by my article about the sad death of Boyzone member Stephen Gately. This was never my intention,”
“In what is clearly a heavily orchestrated internet campaign I think it is mischievous in the extreme to suggest that my article has homophobic and bigoted undertones,” Moir added.
The PCC have said it will only launch an investigation if it receives a complaint from Gately’s family. The Mail have changed the article’s headline from ‘Why there was nothing ‘natural’ about Stephen Gately’s death’ to ‘A strange, lonely and troubling death…’.
Charlie Brooker has called for people to be sensible on the matter; “Unchecked hysteria helps nobody. Let’s all have a lovely peaceful evening, no matter how annoyed” after Moir’s home address began appearing online.