herald

Tuesday 21 August 2018

Sky-gate: Key questions and answers

QUESTION: Has someone at Sky Sports got it in for Richard Keys and Andy Gray?

ANSWER: Keys referred to 'dark forces' at work, and with regard to the leaked video clips, he may have a point. On Monday a YouTube account was opened under the name stevesimons409, since when two clips have been uploaded to the site by that user.

The first showed Gray asking Charlotte Jackson, his Sky colleague, to "tuck this in for me love" as he gestures towards his trousers , footage that we know now led directly to his dismissal. The second, which was uploaded late on Tuesday night, showed Keys talking in sexist terms about a former girlfriend of Sky pundot Jamie Redknapp. The account was closed yesterday, but the damage was done.

Q: How would someone get their hands on clips such as these?

A: They would have to work at Sky Sports or be in close contact with someone who does. The footage uploaded on YouTube had never been seen by the public before and it is safe to assume that you would need to have access to Sky's football department in his radio interview yesterday - before his resignation was announced - Keys intimated that he knows the mole who appears determined to end his career.

Q: Once someone obtained the footage, would it be easy to put it online?

A: Very easy indeed. Opening a YouTube account is no more complicated than setting up an e-mail address. You choose a usernanme, password and you're off. Once uploaded, clips tend to travel pretty quickly once they've hit social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook. That's what happened on Monday and Tuesday, with the clips attractinf hundereds of thousands of hits before the account was closed.

Q: Is there any way Sky can root out the mole?

A: There is, but it will not be easy. Executives might start by going to YouTube to ask for the identity of the person going by the username stevesimons409. The video sharing site is owned by Google and is fiercely defensive of its' customers' privacy, so it is unlikely to get anywhere. Or Sky could launch an internal investigation.

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