The UK press (and some bloggers) have been strangely reluctant to cover the Norman Lebrecht versus Klaus Heymann case which I reported here more than a week ago. But today's Independent on Sunday reports:
"This week Penguin agreed to pulp all copies of Lebrecht's book, which criticised Mr Heymann. Behind the scenes the victory has been greeted with glee by figures in the classical music world who have yearned for Lebrecht's wings to be clipped.
Mr Heymann said yesterday ... "The book made me look like a shit, so something had to be done," he said. "When Lebrecht talks to people he doesn't take notes so he confuses and confounds what people say."
(Lebrecht's) polemics on the music industry have also made him many enemies, which is why this humiliation has been met with glee. Such is his power as a critic that few are willing to speak publicly against him. One of the world's leading conductors, however, told the IoS that Mr Lebrecht has, "for years, been getting away with "pompous, preposterous judgment" and "inept research".
Lebrecht said he could not comment on the Naxos case, but added: "The book contains a handful of minor errors, as most books do. They are being corrected." He also denied not taking notes or confusing his facts.".
But while we are on the subject of errors and confusing people a couple of points for the Independent On Sunday.
Their headline - 'Music critic's book is pulped as Penguin loses defamation case' - is confusing. Penguin didn't lose the case, it was settled out of court.
And it is an error to say on Oct 28 that 'This week Penguin agreed to pulp all copies of Lebrecht's book.' The pulping announcement was made ten days ago, on Oct 18, and was reported on this blog more than a week before the IoS ran the story.
Which is, presumably, why I received this email last week:
Lebrecht v Naxos
From: A.Johnson at independent.co.uk
Sent: 24 October 2007 16:46:38
To: overgrownpath at hotmail.co.uk
Hi there. I'm a reporter for the Independent on Sunday and I'm writing an article for this week's paper about the Lebrecht book on Naxos being withdrawn. I'd really like to speak to someone (off record if necessary) about the rights and wrongs of the row, the standing of Naxos in the classical music world, and the standing of Lebrecht. My numbers are below.
Everything in confidence of course.
Thanks for reading this. Please do not post.
The Independent on Sunday
Sorry about posting Andrew. But as a journalist famous for his polemics once blustered -"Until bloggers deliver hard facts … paid for newspapers will continue to set the standard as the only show in town".
Follow the Lebrecht paper trail here.
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