It took the might of the American chief executive and the British
managing director to shore up the Sotheby’s defence against the attack
of their Channel 4 nemesis Peter Watson. Channel 4’s Dispatches on 6
February, set the agenda for the auctioneers and while Diana Brooks and
George Bailey forcefully protested that the programme content was
’blatant entrapment’, the item sent tremors throughout the European art
The Times on 8 February cautioned Sotheby’s against ’silence and
secrecy’ but postulated that Brookes and Bailey were risking ’shooting
the messenger’ rather than restoring public faith in the company’s
integrity. In contrast to the Telegraph and a number of the broadcast
media, the Times seemed determined to pillory Bailey.
Rival Christie’s, although offered the same ’honey-trap’ in Rome,
refused to play ball with Victoria Parnell, the Australian wired for
sound and vision by Watson, and consequently escaped being tarred with
Evaluation and analysis by Carma International.
Cuttings supplied by The Broadcast Monitoring Company. ’What The Papers
Say’ can also be found at: http//www.carma.com/carma.