Last night, as most of you will be aware, a document appeared online which seemed to show Celtic’s transfer plans for this summer.
This morning the media confirmed that these are genuine and said that Celtic wants it pursued as a criminal matter.
I’ll do a piece on those plans later on today, and talk about what they mean for the weeks ahead, but for now let’s focus on the bigger issue.
This website has written about Celtic’s team-sheets appearing in the public domain before major games, and we have lamented the fans who seem to think it’s cool somehow to spread this stuff around. Team sheets are highly secret documents, for obvious reasons.
Nobody should think it serves Celtic to have those being published in advance.
This is on an entirely different order of magnitude entirely; this is months of work from the club, collated and put together with a very limited distribution list. This is the club’s internal strategy, and its leaking is highly damaging.
No wonder the club is treating this as a criminal matter; that is entirely appropriate and reflects the gravity of the situation.
Our club is leaking like a sieve and it is high time that we conducted internal inquiries to find out who is doing it, and how it’s being done.
Celtic considers this to be stolen documentation, and whilst I agree and whilst I support them if they want to make this a criminal matter – as the media has suggested they will – the club’s own practices have to be sorely questioned in this case.
There are simple measures which can be taken to protect the integrity of documents such as these; for one thing, a document such as this, with a limited distribution chain, should be numbered so that if it does leak it’s easy to identify who’s copy got out there.
There appears to be nothing like that on this one, although that doesn’t mean it wasn’t secured in another way.
In fact, there are some subtle signs within the document that suggest it has been; several player names are spelled wrong for one thing. This could be the result of sloppiness … or it could be that each copy of the document is subtly different. If that’s the case, the person who leaked it should be worried.
As lax as Celtic might have been here I have sympathy for the club. This is a shocking situation. Someone inside Parkhead is working against the rest of us; it is as simple as that. Some leaks are necessary to give fans information about what is happening inside the walls.
I welcome leaks like that, even those which impart information we might find uncomfortable.
This is different. This is an internal strategy document who’s leaking impacts on our ability to do business in the intended manner.
This hurts us, and I can only conclude that its leaking was either designed to do that or is a staggering act of colossal selfishness from someone who paid no heed to the possibility of doing damage to Celtic when they did it.