IMPRESS finds no inaccuracies in SKWAWKBOX article on Streeting ‘abuse’ toward Abbott.

streeting impress.png

In April of this year and then again in August, the SKWAWKBOX published articles detailing testimony by MPs and shadow ministers about ‘in your face’, ‘abusive’ behaviour by centrist MP Wes Streeting toward Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott in a House of Commons corridor.

Streeting had threatened legal action against this blog for the first article, which the SKWAWKBOX refused to delete – and threatened legal action before the publication of the second article, which was published regardless.

Some time after the second article, Streeting and his lawyers lodged a complaint with IMPRESS, the UK’s only Leveson-compliant press regulator, to which the SKWAWKBOX subscribes, claiming the article was ‘distorted and misleading’.

In order to do so, they had to confirm that he will not take legal action over the information contained.

A minute ago, IMPRESS published its findings. The regulator assessed the article against its criteria and found no evidence for any inaccuracy. The regulator also verified the SKWAWKBOX’s parliamentary sources and confirmed their credibility in the course of its investigation.

IMPRESS did find that the SKWAWKBOX should have given Streeting longer than the four hours he had to provide his own comments.

This blog disputes this finding, as press enquiries to the SKWAWKBOX from other publications have provided as little as thirty minutes to respond. Streeting was active on social media well after the enquiry was sent and had a track record of non-response to SKWAWKBOX enquiries.

IMPRESS judged that there was no urgency in publication to require a short response time. Again, this blog disputes this – an enquiry to Streeting and other MPs the previous month received no response, but was instead sent straight to the Huffington Post as evidence of supposed ‘bullying and intimidation’ for a pre-emptive article and an open letter, signed by MPs including Streeting, claiming bullying and intimidation because of the enquiry.

The April enquiry could have been used in the same way – and this risk grew the more time Streeting had before publication.

IMPRESS found that a deadline for response should have been provided – even though the SKWAWKBOX demonstrated that the provision of a deadline in the above enquiry was used by Streeting, other MPs and the media as evidence of ‘bullying and intimidation’. This blog considers this finding to be self-evidently flawed in its dismissal of relevant context.

However, IMPRESS is the UK’s only independent regulator and is free to make its own decision.

SKWAWKBOX comment:

The following facts are worthy of note:

  • IMPRESS found that a part of the process should have been different – but made no findings of inaccuracy, misrepresentation or distortion
  • Streeting could have taken his claim to court but chose instead to waive that option in order to make a complaint to IMPRESS; this meant that neither he nor his two alleged witnesses had to testify under oath in order to state their case
  • Streeting has not complained to IMPRESS about the even more detailed information contained in the second article and cannot now take legal action without breaking his commitment to IMPRESS
  • the SKWAWKBOX stands absolutely by the accuracy of its articles and nothing in the IMPRESS finding undermines that accuracy

Wes Streeting complained to IMPRESS that the first of two SKWAWKBOX articles about the behaviour ascribed to him by multiple parliamentarian witnesses was inaccurate, distorted and a misrepresentation.

The regulator did not support his complaint.


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  1. The obnoxious little turd is lucky there wasn’t someone around to give him kick up the backside his behaviour towards a fellow Labour MP warranted.Hopefully,his CLP will apply a political one in the form of deselection.

  2. Ere, @Skwawkbox?

    Was that photo taken at the actual time screeching got news of the decision?

    Looks like the block-headed problem child’s realised his balls are about to finally drop 🙂

  3. I really find Diane Abbott’s refusal to comment on this a major error on her part. Why should Skwawkbox do the work the PR people should be doing. I will tell you why? Lack of proper defence has reduced Jeremy’s ratings and risked his policies and our chances of getting him into power. The lack of strong defence, openness and straight-batting from Diane’s office has had a similar affect on perceptions of her. For example, the fact that all the attacks against Diane, including death threats which we have heard about, but they have not been made public. She has been portrayed as the quiet victim, hounded by whom we have not been told and in what manner, we have had no evidence. Meanwhile she is mocked and taunted by the MSM. It plays badly amongst the voting public. It causes the whole of the Labour Press team including Jeremy’s to be engaged in firefighting all the time rather than proactive positive work to promote policies. The lies and put on acts of Jess Phillipps, Angela Eagle Luciana Berger and others, have been allowed to go on virtually uncontested. They manipulated a willing media and lied, bringing the Party into disrepute and holding back the cause and the chance of a true Labour government. The attacks on her for the incident when she could not recall some budget figures in 2017, was an indication of poor briefings to her, and weak PR. Skwawkbox is left to pick up the pieces from weak PR. I do think IMPRESS needs to realise that Streeting used any deadline given for response as a sign of ‘bullying and intimidation’. I don’t agree that half an hour is a good enough time to respond. Four hours is good enough.

    1. Spot-on @poetrymuseum.

      Abbot, Corbyn, et al, cannot rely on the likes of @Skwawkbox to get to the bottom of matters each & every time, without any sort of co-operation/ collaboration. Without it, there WILL be findigs against sites like this which will feed & encourage the right and the ‘mass-meeja’

      They also need to start putting the MSM right on a load of matters and Corbyn still hasn’t brought – or even threatened – proceedings against clare perry for her antisemitism slurs on qt last week…

      I don’t see eagle suing anyone on the left for those alleged homophobic slurs, or berger for the supposed antisemitic slurs, but their likes are incessant with their crying wolf to the MSM. That has to be countered and BE SEEN to be countered.

      No more of this bradley style ‘tweet an apology and make a donation to a foodbank’ bollocks…NAIL THEM IN COURT, and THEN donate the damages won to foodbanks & charities.

      1. I agree

        You would have thought that Labour could easily assemble a team of fact checkers so that they could quickly fact check every time a Tory appears on TV or radio and publish any lies on a dedicated website.
        Expose their continues lies and make them afraid to open their mouths.

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