Thursday, 15 December 2016

Media Quotes of the Week: From 2016 is the worst year for journalists jailed worldwide to local press needs an army of reporters not flashy gimmicks

The Committee to Protect Journalists in its annual census of journalists imprisoned worldwide: "More journalists are jailed around the world than at any time since the Committee to Protect Journalists began keeping detailed records in 1990, with Turkey accounting for nearly a third of the global total."

Anonymous digital chief working for a legacy publisher, interviewed on Digiday: "There’s always a little schadenfreude among some legacy media people when something goes sideways in digital. But what that fails to appreciate is that in the grand scheme of things those slip-ups and changes are utterly inconsequential. They may seem a big deal on the day, but the news cycle moves on. There’s no question the world is shifting to majority digital content consumption. If you’re celebrating if something goes wrong, you’re writing your own obituary sooner."

Peter Preston on press regulation in the Observer"Memories of phone hackings long ago haven’t died. Civil court cases drag on. It doesn’t seem a propitious time to try a more peaceable tack. Yet the reasons to stop snarling and start thinking are equally cogent. Journalists aren’t exactly revered by their readers: down to a 24% trust and veracity score on the latest Ipsos Mori polling. They can dig in with Ipso but they can’t make it a game-changer for public opinion. They need one regulator, not three, so that the room for confusion and contention fades. They want sensible, coherent reform."

Laura Kuenssberg, interviewed by Press Gazette, after being named Journalist of the Year: “Marvellously in the British press people want to read polemic, they want to read stuff that provokes them, they want to read stuff they agree with, they want to read stuff they disagree with, they want to enjoy all the fantastic variety of goods we have to feast on in the British press and I wouldn’t change that for a second. At the Beeb we know we’ve got responsibility to be there for everyone and that’s why we’re there. I was a BBC trainee so if you cut me in half I’d have the whole thing through me like a stick of rock. I would die in a ditch for the impartiality of the BBC. That’s what we do. And if you go to any country around the world they would say that we were lucky to have it and of course I agree.”

Roy Greenslade on MediaGuardian on the departure of Mike Gilson as editor of The Argus, Brighton: "It is further confirmation of Newsquest’s parsimonious approach to newspaper publishing in general and the Argus in particular. It is a profit-seeking company that does not care about journalistic quality. As long as the paper comes out every day, it has little interest in the content. Its managers - whether in Britain or in the United States, where its parent company, Gannett, is based - view editorial as an expensive necessity to ensure there is something between the all-important adverts."

Mike Gilson in a new book Last Words? How Can Journalism Survive the Decline of Print? to be published in January, serialised by Press Gazette: "We know journalism is in crisis but very little has been said about the profound democratic deficit that would follow any meltdown? Since 2008 more than 8,000 journalists have lost their jobs. Ironically this has not been deemed important enough a story. Newspapers have folded, commercial television news is decimated and only the BBC has staff in numbers even though at local level it still often feeds off what is left of private sector reporting."

Brighton Argus NUJ chapel in a statement: "NUJ members are perturbed that no announcement on the editor’s absence was made for almost two weeks, in which time the team had moved offices to start an apparently exciting new chapter in the newspaper’s history. Still no reason for the decision has been given. We will try to continue as best we can after this devastating blow but we have less confidence in Newsquest’s commitment to the industry than ever before."

Martin Ivens, editor of The Sunday Times [£], on AA Gill:“He was the heart and soul of the paper. His wit was incomparable, his writing was dazzling and fearless, his intelligence was matched by compassion. Adrian was a giant among journalists. He was also our friend. We will miss him.”

Piers Morgan @piersmorgan on Twitter: "RIP AA Gill. He trashed me for 20 years but always with magnificently eloquent savagery & an irritating kernel of truth."

Sam Blackledge on being a local news reporter, in an article for Media Guardian:  "Those of us who remain have seen our working practices turned upside down. We file straight to the web now, with the print product seen as an afterthought amid the endless drive for clicks. Everything is stretched and everyone is stressed. Council meetings, court hearings and matters of genuine public interest are not covered as they once were. Social media, wonderful though it is, is replacing the underrated art of chatting to the bloke in the pub as the primary form of news gathering...I cannot speak for the people who own and run media companies. They are trying to find a new model for making money from news, and I hope they succeed. Our industry, like that of cinema, is facing an almighty fight for its future. But we don’t need special effects, flashy gimmicks or two-for-one offers. We need an army of reporters who still know how to ask the right questions and poke their noses into the right corners. The rest will take care of itself."


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