Guess who

Posted by Ian

Can it really have been a year? Not in terms of the length of time Madeleine McCann has been missing – plenty of people have been absent for longer – but rather the kind of coverage the story has received in the media.

For most of those 12 months we’ve had to endure day upon day of hysterical scare-mongering, finger-pointing, muck-raking and innuendo. It’s felt much much longer. Tittle-tattle has been elevated to gospel, and insinuation raised to the level of confirmation. Nobody is guiltless, MSN included. The merest scrap of a story has been treated as headline news. Conjecture – so and so *might* have this done to them, this *may* come to pass – has been passed off as fact. The most trivial of events – the McCann parents go out for a walk – has been hyped up to an enormous proportion. The result has been a shameful year for anybody associated with journalism in Great Britain.

After what’s seemed like a lull in coverage, perhaps prompted by the treatment meted out to the Daily Express and Star, the same old headlines are now resurfacing. Or rather, the same old obsessions are resurfacing. The anniversary appears to be an excuse for everyone to pile in with retrospectives and reportage which add nothing to a story that has been appallingly sensationalised from the start.

Let’s not be coy about this. The main reasons the media have been, and will continue to be, drawn to this tale like bees to honey are:

a) the missing person is a cute and adorable child
b) it happened in an exotic, picturesque location
c) middle-class people – i.e. the normally unimpeachable backbone of Britain – are involved

as opposed to:

a) the missing person being ordinary – i.e. dull
b) it happened in an everyday location
c) the usual suspects – i.e. single parents/unemployed/poor people – are to blame

Take a look at the work of Missing People, formerly the National Missing Persons Helpline; in particular the sheer number of current cases of missing and unidentified persons they are promoting (at the time of writing, 289 across the whole of the UK). Every single one of those people has a story to tell. A story that is not being told. A story that continues to be bumped off the pages of real newspapers by anything but real news.

The best thing we can hope for on the anniversary of Madeleine McCann’s disappearance is a change in the attitude of everyone towards this and every case of a missing person. But I doubt it’ll happen. In nobody’s best interest, this will run and run.

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41 Responses to Guess who

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  2. anti says:

    Never a truer word said Ian. It\’s such a shame the McCanns could not have been better parents though, leaving children alone to go for a meal with mates is pure and utter neglect.
    And as for you cc, people like you make me sick you idiot, you\’re the kind of person that harvests email addresses and sends out spam, you\’re a disgrace to the internet community. T W A T.

  3. Unknown says:

    Why doesn´t the newspapers run a feature on the missing people, to see if someone knows where they are?

  4. Emma says:

    ok yea the mcanns did leave their children in a room on their own, but thet does not mean that they should be treated like criminals,and be accused of all sorts of pathetic things.we should be supporting them as a nation when they need it most.no wonder people try to hide crimes and accidents cause they would still get treated like criminals by all the narrow minded people.  and people should stop and think that there is always two sides to every story and we are only hearing the side of the press. who get paid to lie anyway.   so before you go slagging off the mcanns stop and think. give them a break.

  5. Michael says:

    Pffft. The commentor below states we all should give the McCanns a break. They have already had a break at the expense of the mugs who donated to the Maddie "Fund" when they went to see the Pope, then the same mugs paid several mortgage payments for the McCanns. Why on earth should the McCanns get another break? So they can go back to Portugal to be requestioned by the PJ at muggins expense and perhaps lose another child while they party at a tapas bar with their friends? You have got to be joking. The McCanns need to feel more pressure, not let off for Maddie going missing or worse through their neglect.

  6. peter says:

    i dont agree with the article. newspapers and the media tend to jump on the bandwagon and pick and choose which stories get coverage. There are hundreds of brits who go missing or die abroad each year, yet the ones who seem to get the coverage do not always fill the criteria the blogger has set. And how many pretty young girls havent got coverage? we simply dont know. But there does seem to a bias towards young females abroad who go missing and also journalists abroad who go missing too. after al;l, journalists cant resist writing about their own colleagues. and in terms of ethnic murders in the UK, i think there is a definite bias towards coverage of black teens or black youths who have been murdered since Stephen Lawrence. any other ethnic group that gets murdered gets next to no coverage.

  7. Paul says:

    Let us not forget:
    If the parents had not put their own pleasures before the safety of their children there is every liklyhood that the little girl would still be here now.
    I do not believe they harmed her, but I do believe they are the prime cause of her abduction.
    I have every sympathy for the little girl, I have none for parents who would leave young, defenceless and vulnerable children to their own devices while they went out to enjoy themselves.

  8. Matthew says:

        She\’s probably been dead for a long time now, and I\’ll doubt the crime will be solved for years, if not ever. Get over it.

  9. danny says:

    sum1 said it
    if parents didnt leave children in hotel to go 4 a meal it wouldnt ov happened
    parents r to blame
    i think they did it

  10. Unknown says:

    I WOULD NEVER LEAVE MY KIDS HOME ALONE. I THOUGHT IT WAS ILLEGAL…. IN MY OPINION IT WAS AN ACCIDENT WAITING TO HAPPEN. DOCTORS ASWELL!

  11. anjuman says:

    Well what happened to the McCannes could have happened to anyone i just hope parents are much more carefull on holiday and young people generally should be more careful. I think if the news coverd every single story that goes on in the world a lot of people would become depressed and scared. Also in one of my classes i found out a disturbing stastic that if a child under the age of seven goes missing its a 96% chance the child id dead within 24 hours. A sad fact one i dont think people would like to know.

  12. Sam says:

    Personally I actually found that constantly being forced to hear about how we should feel sorry for her parents and how she was so important just annoyed me. Within a fortnight of her having disspeared I was sick of the name Madeline and wondering why the hell she was so much more important than anyone else. Her parents shouldn\’t have left her alone and clearly hadn\’t learnt much when you consider how often they left poor Sean and Amelie (they and Madeline herself are the only people I have sympathy for about this) with random relatives and people while they made a fuss about their missing kid. If I had a kid who\’d gone missing cause I wasn\’t close enough to keep an eye on her I\’d never let their siblings out of my sight unless I had to, it\’d make most people really overprotective, didn\’t make Madelines parents bother to worry about keeping her siblings with them did it?
    If you ask me this case will probably never be resolved now and therefore if they have to drone on they should actually use it for some USEFUL purposes. It should be taken as a warning to parents to put their kids first and the idiots who\’ve spent a year telling us about her should be spending some time making us aware of all the other missing people out there. Recently a "celebrity" went missing, everyone heard about that even if they couldn\’t care much less, in my opinion all "celebrities" are is people with a lot of money, and to me that doesn\’t make them special, to be honest I think having that much cash\’s made a few so stupid they should be banned from the news (e.g the idiots who make taking drugs seem like a clever idea and we all know theres plenty of those nuts about).
     
    All missing people are equally important, why can\’t we make an equal fuss about them all? And instead of giving money to the familes of those who are rich enough to pay for help with the hunt for their missing person, why not give it to those who can\’t afford to do anything more than hope and pray for the safe return of their family?
     
    There are many countries where people are illegally trafficked to work in industries varying from unpaid backbreaking labour, to using dangerous machines, through to anything else you can think of including the sex trade (in other words forced into prostitution when they won\’t earn a penny for it).  This is because people go missing and no-one cares, if we keep thinking its only rich people who matter enough to make a fuss about them when they go missing we\’ll end up like those countries, with people being forced to work for the sake of it, yeah in most cases people originally wanted the "oppourtunities" their trafficker claimed there were and then ended up being forced after they realised the trafficker\’d lied, but hey, if no-one cares anyway they could just get anyone they felt like and use force from the start – well unless of course they had money… cause then the world\’d make such a fuss the victims\’d have to be killed just to make sure they weren\’t found. Consider how many of these traffickers bring their victims to Britain, it\’d be a hell of a lot cheaper for them to nick British people, if no-one cares when it happens then sooner or later they\’ll decide it\’s worth the risk.

  13. robert says:

    I AM SICK TO MY BACK TEETH OF THE McCANNS . THEY LEFT THEIR THREE CHILDREN UNDER THE AGE THREE AT THE TIME , ALONE WHILE THEY WENT FOR A MEAL WITH THEIR FRIENDS . THEY ARE NEITHER INTELERGENT OR CARING PARENTS , AS IT SEEMS THAT THIS IS NOT THE FIRST TIME IT HAPPENED . NOW THIS COMING WEDNESDAY THERE IS A PROGRAM ABOUT THEM ON TV . THEY ARE STILL SUSPECTS IN THE CASE , AND AS SUCH I CANNOT SEE HOW THIS PROGRAM COULD BE MADE . WHY NOT OPEN UP THE MEDIA  TO EVERY SUSPECT ACCUSSED OF CRIME , SO THEY CAN CRY FOR MERCY . THE McCANNS AND THEIR FRIENDS  SHOULD BE MADE TO RETURN TO PORTUGAL , AND LETS SEE AN END TO THIS CIRCUS , WHICH IT HAS BEEN FROM DAY ONE . EVEN THOUGH I HAVE NO TIME FOR HER PARENTS WE PRAY THAT MADDIE RETURNS HOME SAFETLY  

  14. Kathryn says:

    the only persons i feel sorry for are the children,When ever i was on holiday when my children were young i never left them alone we would go out together or stay in together thats what parents are for to protect the children from the nasty evil of this world around us.

  15. carine says:

    i have no sympathy for the parents,they have been very lucky to have got the amount of publicity they have,the mum of ben needham did not,she is very dignified and prays and waits and waits for her son who would be 18 years old now bless him.
    the mc Canns can expect nothing or demand nothing,they were so in the wrong leaving 3 kids under 4,they will have to live with that fact for the rest of their lives, i just want maddeleine to be found alive but god knows what state she will be in bless her.

  16. Unknown says:

    I cant understand the people who have been so vicious and vile in their comments about the Mcanns. What journalists have written has been so cruel ,and I for one was so glad when the Express and others had to apologise for what they had written about the Mcanns. In the name of god give them a break ,this year has been horrible for them and I think they have acted with great dignity. I think that Madeline woke and wandered out probably to find her mum and dad. has fallen down some manhole or similar and not been discovered yet.Lets face it the search the potuguese police carried out was pathetic to say the least. This is my own personal view. I wish the Mcanns all the best wishes I can, and would just like them to know I hope you can get some closure [in a good way] very soon. god bless you both.

  17. KEVIN says:

    12 media vs 1 who wins 1

  18. graham says:

    At best the Mcann\’s are contemptible leaving their children unsupervised (in spite of their constant attempts to lie and twist the facts about this) and they should be prosecuted for child neglect. At worst they might have killed the child, as they are formally suspected of doing. Who knows, but why the media allows themselves to be used by the Mcanns spin doctors is beyond me. A thoroughly disgusting couple, who will undoubtedly burn in hell.

  19. chris says:

    I for one will not be watching the program on weds  although theres still a mising child all the mcanns do is milk the publicity what about all the other missing children in the world there parents dont have the luxury of the mcanns why wont they take a lie detector test?, or have they something to hide

  20. Unknown says:

    The McCanns did not deserve their beautiful children!  Madeline asked why she had been left to cry alone and they only gave it a few minutes thought!  Even at 3 that child knew it was wrong, a few minutes, how dare they admit to that.  Professional people they may be but in my humble opinion not fit to look after children.  Agree witht the other comments as well about then going on to leave their other children in the care of others.  Nothing would prise me away from my prized possesions,  CHILDREN! 
    That all said, poor child still missing, my sympathies are with her and her brother and sister alone.

  21. Astaroth says:

    I don\’t know about anyone else but i for one am sick to the back teeth with the Mccanns. 
    They are still suspects in this case as far as i am aware so why are they being given anymore publicity.
    The main point is they should not have left their children alone for one second would they have done the same in this country?
    I highly doubt it as they would have been prosecuted by now!
    If you had been in the party with them would you not have commented on the fact that it is not safe to be leaving children of that age on their own I know i would.  I certainly would not dream of leaving my children like that.  There is no excuse for it especially on holiday when so many companies offer a baby sitting service and whilst this is not a perfect option would have been far more sucessful than the method of childcare given by the McCanns that evening.
    If they want the nations sympathy why are they not supporting fully the police investigation in Portugal, by rights as suspects in this case they should still be in Portugal and they should not have been allowed to return to this country until the case had been sorted.
    You can tell what sort of people these are by the body language and attitude they have portayed since Maddie went missing.
    I think they should both be subject to further investigation both by both Police Forces.
    Having said this it is probably too late now due to their total lack of co-operation the trail of their daughter has now gone very cold.
    Should no further action be taken again the McCannns they will still have to live with the consequences of their stupidity for the rest of their lives.
     
     

  22. Unknown says:

    I am not convinced it seems to me there is a lot more to this case that meets the eye. Anyone who is anyone would not leave a young female daughter alone in building knowing the times that we live in.
     
    How comes they have had so much world wide travel and meetings with such high power officals, and yet we all know we can think of much worse cases of which are far worse than this one and much more horrific and perverted. And they never ever ever got the treatment that this case has got.
     
    Surely you can see with all the headlines from the news which are just not accurate and as we know the media is one big stirring pot for the powers that be. It seems odd dont you think no evidence to prove or dna anywhere as such to give a lead, its like she has dissapeared off the Planet Earth with no trace. I still dont see why these people left a young baby girl on her OWN in a building thinking she would be alright in this horrible world we live in. And lest not forget they are both in proffessional jobs that give them the education to know better not to leave a child alone. There is no excuse for leaving you bloodline at a very vunerable age at risk to such a open circle to many paths as an end point.
     
    I prey i am proved wrong i really and honestly and deeply do, for the baby girls sake and well being. I just see to many open loops with this case, all these important people from different countrys near and far, and even the pope, UN figures are in the case. yet thousands of cases before this one has never got the tv and media and UN Officals so involved. I have seen and read and wateched many different muder cases of which was far worse, and yet those parents never got the justice or the backing these have got to there circle, so what does that tell you from the powers that be level. I am not convinces there is some thing below the surface of the water to all of this, and it does not add up in intelligent terms and thinking.
     
    to much politics in this case, somet thing is very wrong some where that is the missing piece to all of this case in terms of investigation and the way it has played out. I am not convinced.
     
    ww
     
    notts

  23. Rozanne says:

    Those McCanns
     
    Guilty 100% of negligence towards all of their children – leaving them home alone.
     
    They are wretched self-effacing people.  They are attention seeking not for their missing daughter but for themselves.  It has been like that since the child went missing.  Yeh, sure they would appreciate her return, not least because there would be millions in books and dramas for them!  They want the public to say they did nothing wrong – it wasn\’t their fault.  Unfortunately, It is all their fault.  The initial child neglect caused ALL of this.  ALL of this.  It is all down to them.  Had they not broken Portuguese law and left their children home alone, their daughter would not have been snatched.  It is all their fault and it is about time they did the decent  thing and admitted their guilt!
     

  24. Rachel says:

    This whole sorry tale leaves a bad taste in my mouth, I personally believe that primarily the parents are responsible, as if the children had been being watched there would be no case of Madeline\’s disappearance.  I also think that if these parents had been from a lower class working background that the media would probably have attacked their neglect far heavier and ultimately they have gotten off lightly.  Were Social Services ever involved after her disappearance? I realise they are unlikely to ever make the same mistake again, but for them to repeatedly leave their children alone shows that they are not necessarily in possession of correct parenting skills.  I have always been so aware that children are vulnerable, I have never left my 2 beautiful girls alone, and have often forfeited nights out, it\’s the choice you make when you bring new life into the world, as we all know the world is hardly a safe place all the time.  Having said all this, a child can go missing in a park, at the beach, in a shopping complex, the list is endless, and if this sad tale of neglect raises awareness than something has been gained by the experience.  I feel after Mrs McCann has publicly blamed the holiday company for not providing care facilities when there were options other than to leave infants alone that she should no longer be supprted by the media, how dare she blame anyone but themselves? If you can afford to eat out every night, you can afford to pay for childcare.

  25. Melody says:

    The majority of people blame Madeline\’s parents for leaving her and the twins alone in the appartment, including myself but give them some slack they have learnt thier lesson the hard way and will have to live with that for the rest of thier lives.    

  26. Sinead says:

    My friends and i believe that the Mc Canns DEFINATELY had something to do with Maddys disappearance….
    I dunno whethr they killed her or not but they were involved in some way.
    I hope the twins are placed in care and the Mc Canns are under pain of torture will reveil what happened.
    There is nothing that can be done to forgive them as hurting a child is the lowest thing a person can do.
    Hopefully Maddy soul or body is safe.
     
    xxxxxxxx

  27. Unknown says:

    The only person I feel sorry for is that poor child Maddy, if she is dead poor thing I hope she did not suffer before hand and if she is alive I pray that whoever took her is treating her properly. To her parents I say live with it it is all your fault, leaving your children alone to go have dinner with your friends. I guess dinner was more important than your children.

  28. Heather says:

    tbh i think its a shameful accident, yeah the McCanns are middle class, they were on one of the last nights of their holiday, the kids were tired, they thought they would be fine if they kept checkin on them. In the end i dont think people should be critising them, because they dont need that, all theyre interested in is finding their child. I did have my doubts, but portugal is a sleazy place n i do believe she was taken, so many kids are taken these days, especially by shady foreign men. I read an article a few months after she disappeared that she was in a town in morocco n some ppl went there to see n they showed the locals the picture of maddie n they all said it was the new girl that lived miles away. they wernt exposed to all the press as their government doesnt want to believe they have paedolphiles in their country. The police didnt want to go and look cos it was a "rumour" and they didnt want to travel that far if it might have been false.
    If i was the parents i would have went out there myself and looked after reading that, no matter how far the town was away.
    i do believe she was taken and sold and is now there being used as some sort of slave, especially since they do use them as young as 4.
    but hey, thats just my opinion.

  29. peter says:

    it is obvious the McCanns did it themselves, thats why they were arrested at one point. They did it for publicity, to make money and be famous, having just watched a rather boring 2 hour documentary made by the mccanns on ITV today, I\’m 100% sure they did it. Madelaine is probably hiding in someones apartment which the McCanns authorised, dont forget the McCanns used the money from donations from "the find madelaine campaign" to pay off their mortgage.

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