Le Devoir is whining this morning about not being given free tickets to see The Police.
The article, which makes both Le Devoir and Gillett Entertainment Group look kind of petty, goes over Gillett’s excuses for denying them passes:
Excuse #1: They don’t have enough tickets to give away to “all the media”. Le Devoir sees right through this bull, noting that their photographer (also refused access) doesn’t take up a seat, and the rest of the media didn’t seem to have any problems getting as many tickets as they needed.
Excuse #2: Le Devoir doesn’t have a high enough circulation to make it worthwhile. Also BS. The paper’s circulation is in the six digits and rising, which clearly makes it a powerhouse worthy of the same treatment as the other newspapers and other media.
Excuse #3: Le Devoir doesn’t list when tickets for concerts go on sale. Or, to quote Gillett’s flak: “The other papers are easier to do business with.” This sounds more plausible. Le Devoir is a small paper (small as in size, not circulation or importance), and probably doesn’t have the space nor the lack of shame to give concert promoters free ad space.
Thankfully, Le Devoir isn’t taking this blackmail lying down. If staying independent means they can’t go to the Police concert, they’re not going to the Police concert.
And what do they lose, anyway? I don’t care about what Le Devoir thinks about a concert the day after, and anyone who likes The Police that much was probably at the concert and doesn’t need to read about it the next day.
Maybe, instead of sending journalists to see musicians everyone’s already familiar with, they can find some new people to talk about. It’s not like our city is lacking in talent.
UPDATE: Not a peep from the media concerning Le Devoir’s shunning. So much for media solidarity. The Gazette, the Journal and La Presse all had plenty of coverage of the concert (kinda pointless since nobody who doesn’t already have tickets can see it now), and none made mention of their colleague’s foible (OK, it got one mention — see Kate’s comment below). I guess this is what the mainstream media has come to. Since, when referring to each other’s scoops, they use terms like “a Montreal newspaper” (what are we, idiots?), I guess this shouldn’t come as a surprise.
UPDATE 2: “Vive le Devoir libre!”