Thursday, 22 January 2009

Dear blasts "greedy" newspaper bosses over state aid and relaxing ownership rules

NUJ general secretary Jeremy Dear is scathing on his blog about possible state help for the ailing newspaper industry or a relaxation of media ownership rules.
Both topics may be looked at in the Digital Britain report due out on Monday. But Dear says of the newspaper owners: "Does their greed know no bounds? Whilst they have made excessive profits over the past decade or so and failed to properly manage their businesses they now want taxpayers to bail them out - not because they are losing money but because they can't maintain such high profit levels.
"And on top of that they want further relaxations in media ownership rules as a way of solving 'the crisis'. Each time ownership rules have been relaxed we've been told this will solve the crisis, each time it has led to more job cuts, a fall in quality and a boost in profits - until the next crisis comes along.
"Any merger/takeover resulting from any relaxation of ownership rules should only be approved under conditions on investment, resources for news-gathering and employment rights. Anything less would simply be feeding the insatiable appetite of the corporate news industry."

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