Daily Mail journalist Neil Sears was pelted with curry sauce after he approached the comedian Russell Brand to ask him about his rent arrangements.
Brand yesterday faced criticism after publishing the reporter’s business card on Twitter to his 8.7m followers including details of his office and mobile telephone numbers.
Brand broadcasts a regular video on his Youtube channel called The Trews analysing the media.
When he faced initial criticism for the business card tweet yesterday he claimed it had been pushed through “a family member’s door”.
He later deleted both that tweet and the one publishing Daily Mail reporter Neil Sears’ business card. And he said instead: "That was a bit nuts. He put it thru me door with "please call" on it. They're bothering me Mum. Deleted it. I'm human.”
Sears was not contactable on his mobile yesterday, but Press Gazette understands that the fallout from having his business card published was only a few incomprehensible phone messages.
Last week Sears approached Brand for right of reply on a story about the rent he pays on his house in Hoxton.
Brand has been campaigning on the issue of affordable housing in London and called a Channel 4 News reporter "snide" last week after he asked how much rent he pays for his Hoxton penthouse.
Press Gazette understands that Sears approached Brand outside his home. After being given the impression that Brand would be making a comment, Sears waited outside the building only for Brand to emerge and throw a packet of curry sauce at Sears hitting his hair, face, tie and suit.
Twitter's rules state: "You may not publish or post other people's private and confidential information, such as credit card numbers, street address or social security/national identity numbers, without their express authorisation and permission.”
Some of Brand's followers replied to the initial tweet saying that they had already prank-called Sears, and the image was retweeted hundreds of times before being deleted.
Journalists were quick to criticise Brand..
We take a break from our study on the woodland toilet habits of bears to tell you that Russell Brand can be very immature.
— Isabel Hardman (@IsabelHardman) December 8, 2014
Russell Brand tweeting journalists' personal phone numbers? What a berk.
— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) December 8, 2014
Other Twitter users have called on the comedian to be banned from the site.
So Russell Brand posted mobile no. of a journalist who's written negatively about him. On twitter – to his 8.7M followers. Suspend him.
— Kira Des (@MedievalSwan) December 9, 2014
Twitter's rules further state that "Twitter reserves the right to immediately terminate your account without further notice in the event that, in its judgment, you violate these rules or the terms of service."
In 2012, The Independent journalist Guy Adams was banned from the site after he tweeted the email address of an executive at US TV network NBC after criticising the network over their coverage of the London Olympics.