Thursday, 9 December 2010

Stick with the union?

It was interesting to note that the Australian Society of Authors was not a signatory on the recent open letter to Julia Gillard re Julian Assange.

If I'm wrong I'm happy to be corrected but if in fact the ASA was not a signatory then I want to know why  the fuck not.

In the past the ASA has been the go to place for help, just like a union, but these days I'm not sure they're really doing anything at all over there apart from offering mentorships and professional development courses. This is not the fault of the hard working staff who spend their days grinding out office tasks just like most everyone else.

Click here to read the admirable open letter... 


Juls said...

it *does* say "The signatures here have been collected in the course of a day-and-a-half, primarily from people in publishing, law and politics. The signatories hold divergent views about WikiLeaks and its operations. But they are united in a determination to see Mr Assange treated fairly.

We know that many others would have liked to sign. But given the urgency of the situation, we though it expedient to publish now rather than collect more names."

maybe the signatories didn't think to approach them?

Dale Slamma said...

Oh yes I did see that but shouldn't the ASA have been one of the very first organisations that sprang to mind. They are the peak body for authors, they are supposed to provide advocacy and advice.

I thought it was interesting that I didn't see anything about this on their website.

If they weren't asked then I would like to know why. Why was the peak body, that exists solely to help authors, not approached?

Please note I am not passing judgment on the writers of the letter but on the reputation of the society.

Dale Slamma said...

That is indeed correct. I'm not suggesting they represent him just that they lend their support. Traditionally the ASA and the MEAA have been pretty tight.

Anonymous said...

Surely, Dale, as Assange is a journalist he would come under the jurisdiction (in union terms) of the Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance (MEAA) not the Australian Society of Authors (ASA) who, I imagine, would represent creative writers, not journalists, no?

Benito Di Fonzo