Qantas Looking to Block Alan Joyce Speechwriter's Book

25th Jun 2015

Australian carrier Qantas is looking to permanently block the publication of a new book titled: "Fighting Words", written by former speechwriter for the company's CEO Alan Joyce, Lucinda Holdforth.

Holdforth had been served at her Sydney with orders to appear in the NSW Supreme Courte today at midday.

The carrier said in a statement:

"Senior staff in all companies are aware that discussions and internal documents covering a range of topics are confidential to that company. Ms. Holdforth ignored that duty to keep such material within Qantas. She has written a manuscript seeking to exploit for personal gain confidential internal information that she was privy to."

The statement concluded:

"Qantas had no option but to take action to prevent Ms. Holdforth from breaching her obligations to the company."

Holdforth Wrote the Speech for Qantas' 2011 Grounding

Holdforth was there in 2011 to write a speech for Alan Joyce during the grounding of the entire Qantas' fleet in October that year during a stalemate with the worker's union.

In addition, Holdforth was also present at Qantas' secret meetings in the weeks prior to grounding, so she is privy to a lot of information from that period.

Holdforth herself declined to give a comment regarding the case, but said did say a few things about the book:

"It's a very personal memoir about the craft of speechwriting and my life and experiences as a speechwriter. I have worked with lots of interesting people in politics and business so a few familiar names may come up. I do thing Qantas is a fascinating company and some of my speechwriting adventures with Qantas will no doubt be included."

The book itself, Holdforth said, will not be finished until 2016.

Before writing speeches for Alan Joyce, Ms. Holdforth did the same for Qantas' former CEO Geoff Dixon, as well as the former chairman Margaret Jackson.

Qantas is looking to stop the publication of both the entire book and its parts.