Dear Reader,

Since we last spoke, journalist Sarah Waris has hammered down her final assertion that she’s not afraid to speak about the harassment she endured while getting acquainted with a man who formerly headed one of cricket media’s biggest institutions. Waris detailed in a piece – you’ll spot it lower down in the email – how this senior of some stature went about attempting to lure her (and many young journalists like her) into sexually motivated conversations. Among other things.

That Mumbai Mirror article, strictly speaking, is not in the theme of this newsletter: for one, it’s cricket-related and should automatically disqualify based on genre. And two, it’s neither a deeply-researched piece, nor a visual stunner. Waris will write many better pieces.

But it was necessary. The man has been ostracised by the community, seemingly gone into hiding, and has lost accreditations across the globe: ‘respected’ is no longer a prefix used for this senior journalist. And it was swift: less than a month has passed between when Waris first outed him and this article, which is now five days old.

Of course, that could be because neither lawyers, nor courts have been involved. Only a quick, ostensibly unanimous culling from the community as more and more instances of his behaviour emerged. At least for now, it is a story of victory. And it makes for fifty percent of this week’s collection.

This Friday morning (abridged) newsletter was intended to be a Thursday afternoon regular. But some things changed.

At some point yesterday, I had begun writing about dating culture, Tinder, and the giggles that can be derived from hearing cringeworthy stories of fellow single men losing the plot. It would’ve blended nicely into our story of the week, which for the first time wasn’t going to be a long article: a hilarious blow-by-blow of a woman whose contempt for her date was magnified weeks later, when she received an invoice for the expensive wine she hadn’t ordered.

But a comedic riff on one man’s dating behaviour became instantly untenable when I came across the story of an alleged date-rape, broken down, almost minute-by-minute, by the victim herself. It became un-writable when I found I knew the accused, once a colleague, and whose reputation for being manipulative often constituted the first words of the women who spoke of him.

The prick has vowed to press defamation charges based on self-incriminating social-media evidence, while dancing a harassment number on irony herself, as he repeatedly says these things are best left to the courts.

This won’t be swift. There will be lawyers. And courts. It’ll likely be snail-paced, and there might not even be certain victory at the end. It fits the judicial theme, and the second story for today will give you an idea why.

Yours,

Varun

P.S.: If you felt aggrieved by this interruption of service, there will be a bonus edition containing fun stories, news of a major upgrade for us, and recommendations for tools to make your reading easier. It will roll out in a few days.

 

Articles:

 

How I stood up to my sexual predator

Inhuman resources: The cost of protecting a co-worker

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