In November 2000, Nega Mezlekia, an Ethiopian immigrant, won Canada's most-coveted literary prize the Governor General's Award for Literature for his autobiography, the first book he published. Immediately after, the freelance editor that he had hired to tidy up the early drafts of the manuscript came forward claiming to be the actual author of the memoir. She took her case before the nation's media. It was a time when two of Canada's national newspapers, the Globe and Mail and the National Post, were engaged in a pitched battle not only over circulation but also for the title national newspaper.Launched only two years earlier, the National Post was to be the flagship journal of its parent company, Hollinger, which owned 60 percent of Canada's print media and ranked third in the world. (Worldwide, Hollinger controlled some 600 newspapers and magazines.) Owning the Globe and Mail was the Thomson family, whose wealth ranked first in Canada and whose tradition of running newspapers spanned three generations. Both had the will and the wherewithal to prevail in the bruising battle.Taking up a stand against Nega, the National Post waged a media crusade the likes of which had never been seen in Canada. The authorship dispute was relegated to a secondary position when the National Post got hold of Nega's unpublished work and reproduced pages of excerpts, deliberately distorted. The news dominated the headlines for months. In Canada, there was scarcely a major newspaper that didn't report on it. The scandal got an even bigger audience when newspapers like the New York Times and the Boston Globe picked it up.In Media Blitz, Nega recounts the personal suffering that he endured for the next seven years. Much of what he reports is unknown even to people who followed the case, as it was revealed during the libel suit that he instituted against the National Post, when the newspaper's lawyers were forced to submit the documents. In Media Blitz, Nega also exposes the darker side of the Western legal system, which the mainstream media seldom mentions. (Nega's legal battle concluded in April 2008.) Media Blitz also shows us how, even in the age of the Internet, media moguls still reign supreme.
Used availability for Nega Mezlekia's Media Blitz
March 2009 : Canada Paperback
Title: Media Blitz: A Personal Battle
Author(s): Nega Mezlekia
ISBN: 0-9811764-0-2 / 978-0-9811764-0-6 (Canada edition)
Publisher: Afar House