Cheggers: You're all bullies

Comics blasted for protecting their work

Keith Chegwin has complained that he’s being ‘bullied’ by comedians – just because they want credit for jokes they wrote.

The TV presenter has attracted widespread flack after stealing dozens of jokes he didn’t write and posting them to the 38,000 people who read his Twitter feed. He is also encouraging everyone to spread the gags as widely as they can, rendering them unusable by the comics who actually created them.

Even after the storm blew up, Chegwin has defiantly continued to post gags working comics use in the sets they use to earn their living, and invited people to steal them as if they were his to give away.

Yet the former alcoholic has branded anyone who dare criticise him as a ‘cyberbully’.

‘These are the people I used to admire,’ he tweeted. ‘They're just really hostile - I'm so disappointed. Cyber buliies [sic].

‘Very cruel people on here: Plus comics Ed Byre [sic], Simon Evans, Russell Kane, David Baddiel, who wonders if I’m back drinking. Give it a rest’

He also gave out their Twitter account details, prompting his fans to bombard the comedians with messages – while blocking several critics from contacting him through Twitter.

Byrne sent a message to Chegwin over the microblogging network: ‘You know that calling me a Cyber Bully is completely unfair. I've done no such thing.’

While Baddiel said: ‘Cheggers fans angrier than Al-Qaeda. No wish to offend though’ and apologised to the presenter for suggesting he was back on the booze.’

Supposed ‘bully’ Simon Evans started the whole debate off by telling Chegwin: ‘Cheggars old chap, you are no doubt acting out of good intentions but these jokes are written by professionals. They earn their keep telling them and it's really not on to just distribute them like this, without credit.'

At the same time, Byrne said: ‘I think you’re wrong not crediting your sources. Of the last four jokes you tweeted one was Milton Jones and one was Lee Mack. Both working comics.’

Cheggers posted back: ‘Most of the gags are my very own & original. Others are so old I'm not gonna start crediting dead people?’

‘I've really upset these standup comics. Most of them doesn’t [sic] write good Stuff they just refresh your memory.’

Published: 23 Jul 2010

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