Friday, 1 March 2013

Quotes of the Week: From sexism in newspaper offices to the press regulation war kicks off

Cathy Newman (top) in the Telegraph: "Some of the most glaring instances of sexism directed at me took place in newspaper offices or at the hands of newspaper executives. When I worked for the Financial Times, I confronted a senior executive about the fact that a man who was significantly junior to me was getting paid a lot more. The executive asked me what I needed the money for, since I didn’t have a mortgage or a family. I laughed it off and made sure I got a pay rise. Slightly more intimidating was the time, ironically at a political party conference, when a man who was then the editor of a national newspaper started propositioning me in the bar, despite knowing I was in a long-term relationship, and despite my making it patently clear that I wasn’t interested."

Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg , as quoted by the Daily Mail, on the journalists investigating Lord Rennard: "Self-appointed detectives."

Neil Wallis, former deputy editor at the News of the World, speaking on the BBC Radio 4 Today programme after being told there was “insufficient evidence” to bring charges against him: “I think that they [the police] were under tremendous political pressure to make an arrest. I think something has to be questioned. We’re not bank robbers, we’re not rapists, we’re not murderers. 21 months is an awful long time. There should be a cut off point. There are 60 journalists under arrest at the moment – more journalists than are under arrest in Iran.”

 Peter Oborne in the Telegraph: "Meanwhile there’s informed speculation that James Harding, recently sacked as editor of the Times, is to be given un unspecified role in the news operation. This is hardly encouraging. ''Scoop’’ Harding memorably turned down the MPs’ expenses story (later picked up by The Daily Telegraph) while overseeing a 40 per cent collapse in circulation during his five years as editor."

NUJ general secretary Michelle Stanistreet, in a statement: "They [newspaper publishers] have gone back on their promises to pick up the Leveson recommendations, generally seen as moderate and proportionate, and have conspired together to offer a solution that ignores journalists, excludes the public and the victims of phone hacking and serves only the interests of publishers.”

Mick Brown on 25 years of Matt cartoons in the Telegraph: "What makes Matt so distinctive? His cartoons are gentle, wry, alive to the absurdities of daily life; the things we love, and the things we don’t. They are unerring in their dissection of the follies and vanities of human nature, but they are utterly devoid of venom or malice. It is the humour of gentle mockery, cut with the delicious pang of recognition. They are often a beat ahead of you – the joke you wish you had thought of, but know you never could."

Professor Peter Cole in the new book After Leveson? on the various meetings of hackademics and media pundits that followed the Leveson Report: "The meetings were frequently lofty, seldom including representation (of advocates or views) from the popular press which was at the heart of the Leveson inquiry. The ‘hackademics’ seemed often to be the most detached from the real commercial world, some giving the impression that all would be well if the Guardian was the only newspaper on sale, distaste for the Daily Mail and all things Murdoch seemingly a badge of office."

Dorothy Byrne, commissioning editor for Channel 4 news and current affairs, speaking at the , reported launch of After Leveson?: "Anybody thinking about legal regulation of the press needs to take into account that large corporations and evil regimes will try to use it to stop freedom of speech."

Hacked Off associate director Evan Harris on the prospects of press regulation backed by a Royal Charter, at the After Leveson? launch: "There is no sign of agreement. It is far short of Leveson. I don't believe a Royal Charter will happen"

Mick Hume, after being told to calm down by Evan Harris at the After Leveson? launch debate: "This is a fucking war."

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