Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Media Quotes of the Week: From PM announces review into the future of newspapers to how many journalists does it take to down a 13 bottle lunch?

Theresa May, announcing a review of the future sustainability of newspapers in the UK and whether creators are appropriately rewarded for their online content, as reported by BBC News: "Good quality journalism provides us with the information and analysis we need to inform our viewpoints and conduct a genuine discussion. It is a huge force for good. But in recent years - especially in local journalism - we've seen falling circulations, a hollowing-out of local newsrooms, and fears for the future sustainability of high quality journalism...This is dangerous for our democracy. When trusted and credible news sources decline, we can become vulnerable to news which is untrustworthy."

NUJ general secretary Michelle Stanistreet, welcoming the review: "The media industry is in crisis today, more than 300 local newspapers have been closed in the past decade and more than half of all parliamentary constituencies do not have a dedicated daily local newspaper. We have consistently highlighted the severity of this situation – our local communities deserve better. Hollowed-out shells of titles are no substitute for properly-resourced titles, with real investment in the provision of news and information that communities are crying out for."

Sun chief reporter@ByTomWells on Twitter:"Worth noting this morning that that the quite extraordinary development in the ‘Nick’ saga can only be revealed today because of a legal battle launched - and won - by @TheSun."

Caitlin Moran in The Times [£] on the Piers Morgan interview with Donald Trump:"He didn’t mention the investigation into Russian collusion, or his repeated threats of nuclear attacks on North Korea, or ask how a man with the hugest information resources on Earth could have the brass balls to claim that it was OK to retweet the racist organisation Britain First because he “didn’t know who they were”. It really wasn’t journalism. The next day the ratings came in — only three million. The afternoon quiz Eggheads gets 2.4 million, so it wasn’t really showbusiness in the end — it was no business. Celebrity-wise, Trump and Morgan are a failed double act."

Piers Morgan‏ on Twitter: "BREAKING NEWS:I think we have a late winner of my £1000 prize for the nastiest, bitchiest review of #TrumpMorgan by a jealous media rival - congrats @caitlinmoran! I’ll send the money to SAS hero Bob Curry to help him kit out his new home."

David Hepworth in Inside Publishing on Fire and Fury: "Michael Wolff is a magazine journalist by trade. After this book, it’s reasonable to assume that he’s one of the wealthier magazine journalists in the world. Most of his career has been spent writing for people like Vanity Fair and the Hollywood Reporter. He likes being near fame and power as much as his readers like reading about fame and power. His speciality is being able to explain power to media and media to power. Here is where he has an advantage over the standard hard news guys who have been trying to fit Trump into their idea of a politician. If ever you needed proof that the pen is mightier than the You Tube clip, then the bombshell success of Wolff’s book is it. Hard news men might have thought they didn’t have enough to go on. A magazine man like Wolff knew that he had more than enough."

The Sunday Times [£] in a leader on  the decision by the Independent Press Standards Organisation to uphold a complaint against an article by Lynn Barber on a Syrian asylum seeker she took into her home: "In effect, its ruling forbids writers from telling a story without the approval of their subjects. If this stance were to be repeated, there would be no memoirs or eyewitness accounts in the press. Attempts to silence people’s first-hand experience will only drive controversial narratives to the unregulated internet...Ipso’s condemnation after Mr [Mohammed]
Ahmed complained he was discriminated against is a cruel blow to Ms Barber’s freedom of expression and the press freedom that sustains the quality of The Sunday Times’s journalism. We are submitting to its ruling because we believe in self-regulation of the press and will not bow to a state-approved regulator. But Ipso should ask itself whether its purpose is to prevent a journalist of Ms Barber’s stature from keeping faith with her readers."

IPSO in its ruling against The Sunday Times: "The article included extensive information about the complainant, relating to: his family and personal relationships; his domestic arrangements; his financial circumstances; his journey to the UK; his asylum application; his relationships and interactions with the journalist, including an argument they had had, and a letter he had written to her, expressing his feelings about the disagreement; his psychological and physical health; his drug use; and allegations about the possession of private, sexual material. These details were used to create a detailed and intimate portrait of the complainant, and his life. The complainant was not a public figure, and had not publicly disclosed the information about his experiences contained in the article, or consented to the article’s publication. The extent of this detail, published without his consent, and where no steps were taken to obscure his identity, represented an intrusion into his private life."

Trinity Mirror in a statement in open court as part of settling a phone hacking case with actor Hugh Grant, as reported by Hacked Off“A number of its senior employees, including executives, editors and journalists, condoned, encouraged or actively turned a blind eye to the widespread culture of unlawful information-gathering activities at all three of its newspapers for many years and actively sought to conceal its wrongdoing from its many victims of intrusion. its repeated and prolonged intrusions into innocent people’s lives over, in some instances, a decade, could have been prevented or interrupted. Instead, Trinity Mirror failed to properly investigate these disgraceful actions and/or to act sufficiently when the allegations of MGN’s journalists’ unlawful activities were first alleged and publicly emerged in 2006 and when the first inquiries into these wrongdoings were made.”

Dickon Ross in InPublishing on how InsideHousing magazine highlighted the dangers of cladding on tower blocks before the Grenfell Fire: "So, next time you hear someone remarking that no one, least of all the media, ever called out the conditions and the failings that led to the tragedy that was the Grenfell fire, you can correct them. They were just looking at the wrong media. At least one magazine was on the case and it was speaking truth unto power. The terrible shame is that those in power were not listening as they should."

Peter Pringle in The Times [£]: "In your otherwise excellent obituary of Philip Jacobson (January 16, 2018) [pictured] you state that the record-breaking eight-hour lunch he enjoyed in Bogotá was shared with “colleagues”. On the contrary, it was attended by just two people — myself and Philip. We were, between us, solely responsible for the 13 bottles of wine consumed that day. I believe it is only fair to the great tradition of Fleet Street lunches that the record on this matter should be set straight."


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