9 Year Old Food Critic / Photographer Gets Shut Down 0

Update:

The decision has been reversed.  The Guardian just put out an article stating that the Argyll and Bute Council had a very quick change of heart.

Roddy McCuish, the council leader, told BBC Radio 4 that he had ordered an immediate reverse of the ban, imposed earlier this week. He said: “There’s no place for censorship in Argyll and Bute council and there never has been and there never will be.

full story

Original Post:

Martha Payned is a typical nine-year-old school girl from western Scotland  who started a blog documenting her school lunches.  Her blog, NeverSeconds, quickly went viral with it’s honest and witty commentary and documentary style photography.

Children around the globe joined in the online fun by sending her pictures of their meals.  She received images from Germany, Japan, Finland, Illinois, and Spain.  Fun Right? After going viral and getting the stamp of approval from Jamie Oliver she decided to share the attention with a charity called Mary’s Meals which funds lunch programs in the world’s poorest communities.

Well, after seven weeks of good fun and two million views , Martha has this to write

Goodbye.

This morning in maths I got taken out of class by my head teacher and taken to her office. I was told that I could not take any more photos of my school dinners because of a headline in a newspaper today.

I only write my blog not newspapers and I am sad I am no longer allowed to take photos. I will miss sharing and rating my school dinners and I’ll miss seeing the dinners you send me too. I don’t think I will be able to finish raising enough money for a kitchen for Mary’s Meals either.

Goodbye,
VEG

and her Dad who has kept his fingers out of the blog until this point added

Hi,
Veg’s Dad, Dave, here. I felt it’s important to add a few bits of info to the blog tonight. Martha’s school have been brilliant and supportive from the beginning and I’d like to thank them all. I contacted Argyll and Bute Council when Martha told me what happened at school today and they told me it was their decision to ban Martha’s photography.

It is a shame that a blog that today went through 2 million hits, which has inspired debates at home and abroad and raised nearly £2000 for charity is forced to end.

Dave Payne
neverseconds@gmail.com

What is it about documenting reality that scares the Argyll and Bute Council.  Hopefully they reconsider their choice and let the fun-loving blog continue.

To Martha – don’t give up.  Even if you’re not allowed to take photos at your school, you could still post images that are send in from your readers, or talk about other food adventures you happen upon.  You have a fun thing started here, don’t give up.

Note of interest – her blog has a counter on the bottom that is ticking up fast.  As I write this post it shows 2,747,935 views and is climbing fast.  I think Argyll and Bute’s attempt at keeping publicity away from their food program may well have back fired.

[NeverSeconds] via [Gizmodo]