Robert Worsley: not a Nazi

Posted by: | September 28, 2009 | 3 Comments

Did you notice this correction in today’s edition of The Ubyssey?

On November 28, 2008, The Ubyssey published an article entitled “RCMP have ‘final solution’ to the ‘fraternity issue.'” The article in question was part of The Ubyssey’s annual all-satire edition. The Ubyssey and staff regret having left its readers with the impression that the RCMP on campus has used violence or excessive force or acted in any manner similar to the Nazi party during the Second World War. The Ubyssey and staff also regret any damage the article may have caused to the reputation of the RCMP member who was named in the article, Cpl. Robert Worsley.

What the heck is going on here? Paul Bucci, the paper’s coordinating editor, sat down with UBC Insiders today to explain the circumstances around this unusual correction. Over the summer, legal counsel for Cpl. Worsley sent a letter to The Ubyssey threatening legal action if a correction was not issued. After discussing the matter with the paper’s board of directors and editorial board, it was decided to issue the correction above. In addition, the Ubyssey has agreed to make a $1,000 donation to in Robert Worsley’s name to the charity of his choice. No legal action will be initiated against the paper.

Cpl. Worsley, who is now part of the RCMP’s 2010 unit, could not be reached for comment.

Because the story in question was published in the satire issue it unfortunately was never put online. Ordinarily, UBC Insiders would be happy to make relevant documentation available but in the interest of not exposing ourselves to a possible libel claim it shall remain offline. We respectfully observe that there is a yellow cabinet just inside the Ubyssey’s office containing back issues, including the November 28, 2008 issue. As well, Insiders contact info can be found on the sidebar.


3 Comments so far

  1. The Kommander on September 28, 2009 10:18 pm


  2. Alex Lougheed on September 28, 2009 10:23 pm

    Yet another argument for the need for a satire defense in Canadian defamation laws. I don’t think any reasonable person could have interpreted that article as seriously alleging Mr. Worsley as an officer of the Third Reich.

    And really, if you’re a public servant, you should expect and embrace public criticism. It’s how the public keeps its institutions serving themselves. This was an unprofessional move, for sure.

  3. Sheldon on September 29, 2009 11:21 am

    This reminds me of the time Bill Vander Zalm sued a cartoonist.

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