Thursday, 4 June 2015

Media Quotes of the Week: From Blatter out to Alan Rusbridger bids goodbye to the Guardian

The Times in a leader [£] : "As the extraordinary dimensions of the Fifa scandal came into focus on Wednesday one of the American reporters who broke the story tweeted: 'Dear World, We don’t even like soccer and we’re going to clear up Fifa for you.' The footballing world owes the FBI a debt of gratitude but it should also hang its head in shame. Cleaning up football is everyone’s business."

The Daily Mail in a leader: "As the Fifa corruption scandal threatens finally to engulf Sepp Blatter, it’s a timely reminder of the value of a free Press – in this case the Sunday Times – which has done so much to expose how rotten football’s governing body truly is."

Culture secretary John Whittingdale in the Sunday Times [£] : "If real change really does come to Fifa, football fans the world over will long be grateful to the tenacious British journalists who helped to make it happen."

The Sunday Times in a leader [£] : "The Fifa arrests and charges are a reminder that an “Anglo-Saxon” free press, prepared to spend money on high quality investigative journalism working in alliance with American power, is still often the only way to tackle corruption in high places."

Lionel Barber ‏@lionelbarber on Twitter: "If they think it's all over, it is now #BlatterOut"

Nick Cohen in Standpoint: "For all the sectarian fervour he has aroused, John Whittingdale is not saying he will end the licence fee. For all its attempts to intimidate journalists, the SNP does not want to close the BBC but seize control of it. Scrupulous politicians know they must show restraint if free societies are to remain free. In London and Edinburgh unscrupulous politicians know that an 'independent' broadcaster that can be threatened with cuts to its grants and bullied in a way no truly independent journalist would ever accept, is much too useful an institution to destroy."

BBC director of news James Harding, quoted by the Guardian, on political parties' complaints about the Corporation's General Election coverage: “Labour was angry about the focus on the SNP, the Tories regularly questioned our running orders and editorial decisions, the Lib Dems felt they weren’t getting sufficient airtime, the Greens complained about being treated like a protest movement not a party. Ukip railed against what they saw as an establishment shut-out, the DUP felt Northern Ireland parties were being treated as second-class citizens, the SNP questioned what they saw as metropolitan London bias at the BBC.”

Nick Robinson in the Mail on Sunday:  "On a rather bad mobile line I was sure, at first, that I was being asked if I could recommend anyone to take charge of Ed Miliband’s presentational difficulties. I began to rack my brains until it began to dawn on me that I had misheard. I was being asked whether I would consider taking on the job of spin doctor, with a role at No 10 to follow, naturally. That’s right – me. For the rest of the conversation I had to resist the urge to roar with laughter and inquire whether the caller had got the wrong number. Instead, I politely expressed my thanks for being considered and explained I remained committed to journalism (just as I did when the papers reported a long time ago that I’d been approached to work for ‘the other side’.)"

Robert Peston in the Radio Times on complaints about his presentation style when he joined the BBC:
"They hired various presentation specialists, all of whom have gone on to seek other careers, I'm sure, because it was a total failure. And then, I had been moaning away about how the economic world as we knew it was about to come to an end because of all these banks taking these stupid risks - and lo and behold it happened.  I got one or two decent stories, and suddenly people stopped obsessing about the way I said things and started to take an interest in what I was saying."

Alan Rusbridger in his farewell to readers of the  Guardian: "From the day I arrived, the Guardian felt like a warm bath – a place of sanctuary for free thought and writing."

Sir Harold Evans on Rusbridger on Press Gazette: "Alan Rusbridger by great daring, flair, fine judgment and consistent courage has over 20 innovative years of editorship done a remarkable thing: he has enhanced the worldwide reputation of a great newspaper without apparently breaking a sweat. What's he taking? It has been very good for journalism and all of us."

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