This week, NOW Magazine called out Jesse Brown, of TVO’s Search Engine, over comments Brown made on Monday night at SaveOurNet.ca’s Open Internet Town Hall meeting at the Gladstone Hotel. If you missed our coverage of the net neutrality event, here’s what Brown said: “NOW Magazine, Rabble.ca, the absent Mrs. Chow—is it necessarily a good idea to align net neutrality with the far left in Canadian politics? I can see it just as easily being a right-wing free market libertarian issue…why don’t we keep net neutrality neutral and put up a big tent, and everybody who cares about it can get under?”
Upset, Josh Errett, who helms NOW‘s Twitter feed (and who edited Torontoist back in the day), tweeted: “Excuse me, but what the F are you talking about with this net neutrality neutral song-and-dance?” Brown could have probably made his point at the meeting without singling out NOW, but the comment shouldn’t have been taken as an insult: all of the media outlets at the event were left-leaning, and Brown was merely questioning whether the left’s prominence in the movement was damaging its broader reach.
Throughout this week, Brown and NOW traded barbs regardless, until, on Thursday, Errett went a step further and wrote an article accusing Brown of “pointing fingers” and then running away. To which Brown tweeted: “*sigh* Must I feed the troll?” Brown’s been silent since, while Errett’s (and, transitively, NOW‘s) frustration has been only growing. Replying to another Twitter user who called out NOW‘s “bad form” in the “poorly thought out twitter fight,” Errett wrote: “You shouldn’t go to a packed event, stand up and make accusations, then refuse to answer for it. Twitter or no, it’s lame.”