Independent Online has received a bloody nose from the Internet Service Providers Association. The news-site which refused to correct a biased and factually incorrect news report about the ongoing Lewis vs Media24 case, was forced to take-down defamatory and potentially libelous material over the weekend. The take-down was confirmed via email, after a complaint was made by the author of this blog.
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Take-Down Notice: #223 Lodged via the ISPA website.
ISP Name: Internet Solutions
Link to infringing content: http://www.iol.co.za/news/south-africa/journalist-takes-media24-to-ccma-1.305142
Name: David Robert Lewis
Email Address: [email protected]
26 Kitchener Rd, Woodstock, Cape Town
Postal Code: 7925
Telephone Number: 021 4480021
Mobile Number: 082 425 1454
The offending article published by IOL (dns resolves via Internet Solution) carries false, incorrect and unsubstantiated allegations regarding the success or lack thereof of an *in limine* application
before the CCMA, which found nothing more than that I was an independent contractor and thus fell outside of the ambit of the commission. The conclusions reached by the author of the piece, Karen
Breytenbach were thus *ultra vires* and beyond the powers of the said commission.
Furthermore, the article failed to mention I had subsequently taken the Cape Times/Independent Group to the Small Claims Court and won an award against the company. Judgment was handed down in the Small Claims Court for the District of Cape Town in the amount of R1212.90 *in my favour* and this fact was completely ignored. The case is recorded by the Sheriff of Cape Town as case # 336/02 Lewis v Cape Times, Independent, in accordance with the Small Claims Act # 61 of 1984 as amended.
The article also misrepresents the nature of the dispute and takes my words out of context. The dispute referred to involves my right (among other things) to express my cultural life as a person of Jewish
descent within the corporate media context in terms of labour law and law of contract — to not have the corporation impinge upon my right to observe the Sabbath in the manner in which I choose.
The statements made by a Media24 media manager and quoted by Breytenbach are also incorrect and are not born out by any evidence. A fraud docket with regard to the fraudulent attachment of my signature to a document purporting to be a contract of employment between myself and Media24 has been opened at the Woodstock Police Station. The case number is 188-03-2010.
Furthermore, the article failed to mention that my rights were violated and prejudiced by an arbitrary
settlement which failed to adhere to 20.1 of the supposed Contract.
The Contract in any event cannot be relied upon and any contractual relationship which may have existed between myself and the respondent in the matter has since been repudiated on the basis of the corporation\’s own deception with regard to its false claim of \”political transformation\” and/or participation in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
My latest documents filed before the Labour Court lists no less than 12 points with regard to the collapse of any basis for a sound contractual relationship between myself and the respondent and *viz vi* the settlement.
The article fails to note that the aforementioned settlement was only in respect of a claim for the \”balance outstanding in terms of my salary and overtime\” and did not impact upon my right to seek gainful employment at the company.
There is thus an ongoing discrimination case arising out of the arbitrary settlement and failure to provide a bone fide reason for dismissal, which is now in its fifth year.
The respondent was also unable to provide any settlement documents referring to in the article and/ or the actual
contract and this is the basis for the ongoing contractual dispute in terms of the common law.
The offending paragraphs are:
\”David Robert Lewis has in the past taken or threatened to take other employers in the media industry – including the Cape Times – to the CCMA, without success.\”
\”Lewis claims he was forced to work 14-hour days, seven days a week, \”thus being unable to celebrate the Jewish
Sabbath from Friday sunset to Saturday sunset\”.
\”Taljaard said the company had paid Lewis a full and final settlement, which he had accepted and signed. When Lewis was appointed his contract stated he would work every second weekend. Lewis accepted this despite being Jewish, said Taljaard.\”
My right to reputation, right to dignity has been infringed by the material. Furthermore I have been denied the right to reply or to respond to the allegations. The damage to my reputation is ongoing since the material is easily accessed via the Internet. Furthermore I have been denied access to the Press Ombudsman due to their 14 day prescription rule which fails to take into account the advances of the Internet and the fact that the piece is republished whenever the website is access or downloaded.
The offending clauses should either be removed, or I should be given the right to reply / respond. My response should be published in an equally prominent position on the website concerned. Failing which I demand a retraction and/or an apology by the editor.
The above information is to my knowledge true and correct and has been provided in good faith.