Thursday, 17 October 2019

Media Quotes of the Week: From will another journalist ever be PM after Boris? to reporters matter more than anyone else in journalism

Ray Snoddy in The Journalist"It is highly unlikely that anyone is going to rush to appoint another journalist as Prime Minister anytime soon. The former journalist and maybe soon to be former Prime Minister Boris Johnson has surely seen to that. He has already secured the title of worst Prime Minister in living memory and may already be the worst in history, given his arrogance, incompetence, track record of failure and bluster."

Roy Greenslade in the Guardian on Dominic Cummings: "He appears determined to be his own man rather than be part of someone else’s story. Whether or not this is bad for the country – we shall see – it cannot be denied it’s rather good for our trade. We thrive on colourful characters courting controversy. Journalism is often the beneficiary of big egos in the sense that, in promoting themselves, they inevitably provide stories...So, in spite of the darkness of his message, let me applaud Cummings, the messenger who has stepped out of the shadows. We may not have him for long, of course, but let’s enjoy him while we can."

John Simson @JohnSimpsonNews on Twitter: "When I became the BBC’s political editor in 1980 the disgraceful old lobby system where ‘Downing St sources’ were quoted for everything was rampant. Thatcher, Major & Blair did away with it. Now it’s back. I think journalists should identify their sources."

Pic: NY Times
New York Times president and ceo and former BBC director-general Mark Thompson giving the 2019 Steve Hewlett Memorial Lecture: "The media world is dividing into potential global winners, probable survivors, and the rest. The UK certainly has possible survivors – among national newspapers, the Daily Mail and Guardian for instance. But with due respect – and notwithstanding the sizeable international audiences which several UK newspapers have built up – none looks like a potential global winner....I don’t see how all the current national titles survive. At regional and local level, it looks like something close to a wipe-out without dramatic intervention."

Paul Dacre in a letter to the Financial Times: “Admirable chap he may be, but Geordie Greig, in his Lunch With The FT, is as economic with the actualit√© [news] as your paper is in reporting matters Brexit. He claims 265 advertisers came back to the Mail in his year as editor. In fact, far more than that number left during the same period.”

Yorksire Post editor James Mitchinson in an interview with the Financial Times says the YP will soon have to put up a paywall: “We will have to ask readers to contribute financially. I do not think there is an alternative.”

State approved press regulator IMPRESS in its third annual report: "The Conversation, Bedford Independent and Plant Based News are among 38 new titles to have come under the regulatory remit of IMPRESS in the past year. They join a steadily growing membership of over 130 newspapers and news sites that also include award-winning titles Bellingcat, New Internationalist and The Lincolnite, reaching over 11 million readers each month. In 2018-19, IMPRESS dealt with 39 complaints and published one arbitration award, seven adjudications and issued three advisory notices concerning unwarranted press intrusion."

John Humphrys talking to Jeremy Vine on BBC Radio 2: "The really big job, that matters more than anything else, is that of reporter. Without reporters we don't have information. Without reporters we don't have democracy. Reporters are at the heart of journalism."

Jeremy Vine @theJeremy Vine on Twitter: "Totally agree with John Humphrys on this. People say reporters are jealous of presenters — but all presenters, in their hearts, know that reporters are doing the most important thing."

John Humphrys asked by Observer reader Robert Jones if he would encourage young people to go into journalism: "I wouldn’t be encouraging, no, because it is an immensely competitive field. When my son wanted to be a cellist, he had an audition at the Royal College, and I went in with him to turn the pages of the music. When he finished, the tutor said: 'Hmm, I would advise you not to become a professional cellist.' You can imagine my son’s face. And then the tutor said: 'Unless doing anything else would make you very unhappy.' That’s corny, but that’s how I feel about journalism."

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