independent

Sunday 20 April 2014

Newspaper insists pigeon claims article was 'well reported'

A Shankill man profiled by the New York Times said he has to hunt and grill pigeons to live

The New York Times has defended an article it published on post-Celtic Tiger Ireland stating that the article was ''extremely well-reported''.

The article by journalist Liz Alderman was widely criticised for inaccurate journalism after she discussed the levels of poverty present within Irish society.

A New York Times spokesperson said '' This story highlights the social consequences of what many Irish citizens and the Irish government itself has long pointed out, which is that austerity policies can have a negative social effect on a part of the population.

''While Ireland is turning a corner, there are still people being left behind.  The article is extremely well-reported and states that “Ireland is being held up as nothing less than a symbol for recovery” while other European countries are struggling to exit their bailouts,'' it said.

The controversial article by writer Liz Alderman, entitled 'Hardships Linger for a Mending Ireland', explores life in Ireland after the economic crash.

She cited 55-year-old John Donovan, who lives in his mother's cottage in Shankill, who last week insisted that the article had ''sensationalised'' his hardship.

According to the article, former businessman Mr O'Donovan said he shoots pigeons and grills them outside to save money.

She describes 'Downtown Dublin' as quite prosperous, while people living in other areas are still living in poverty.

The NYT corrected an error in the article stating two-thirds of Irish people did not pay their mortgage on time for the last two years.

''This article is superficial, badly researched and totally subjective,'' user Joseph Noone commented on the NYT piece.

Another said, ''Please this is ridiculous, the journalist has obviously interviewed a VERY extreme case, this is not how the average person in Ireland lives.''

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