Friday 27 May 2011

Quotes of the Week: From Ryan Giggs to nuts

The Times in a leader: "Jeremy Hunt, the Culture Secretary, declared last week that the internet was 'making an ass of the law'. In fact, the law needs no such help. Contempt of court is a crime, but contempt for Britain’s injunction habit is close to universal."

Michael White on his Guardian blog:
"The awkward fact is that newspapers are desperate to keep a lucrative branch of their trade open in increasingly hard times, when the internet and other new technologies are making it more difficult to pay the rent. The suspicion that they may be orchestrating some of the tweets – as they do pliable MPs – has even reached the ear of judges."

Brian Cathcart on the Index on Censorship's Free Speech blog: "And just remember this if you are tempted to judge that footballer: behind everything that Imogen Thomas has done in this case is the Sun, the sister paper of the one that has been caught hacking telephones on an industrial scale. . . These people are professional life destroyers and they are just going about their business.This is not a story about 'freedom of speech'. That is just what they want you to think. It is a story about whether any of us has any privacy."

Stephen Glover in the Independent on judges: "They have not understood the rising disquiet at the privacy law they are developing out of Article Eight of the European Convention on Human Rights. They believed only the tabloids were irked. In fact, the issue is turning into one of free speech which concerns parliamentarians and the public."

Ray Snoddy on Newsline: "The concept of public interest needs to be widened to take in more categories of behaviour beyond the anti-social and criminal. It would have the merit of going with the grain of technology and history. Why should football supporters or indeed cinema-goers not know about scandalous behaviour of those whose salaries they pay? Many such performers profit massively from image rights and sponsorship deals trading usually on the fact that they are regular guys or girls not flaunting conventional societal values. "

Marina Hyde in the Guardian: "I'm all for privacy injunctions being granted on a case-by-case basis, though others will not concur. But can we at least agree to dispense with the idea that such stories are run for any nobler reason than money-spinning titillation? To pretend otherwise seems a hypocrisy infinitely greater than that Ryan Giggs is supposed to have indulged in."

NUJ negotiator Jenny Lennox on Johnston Press offering its journalists free bingo: “It seems that the real lottery for journalists at Johnston’s is whether or not they will still have a job in a year’s time.”

Guardian cartoonist Steve Bell on politicians:
"These men and women are professional idealists and I take my hat off to them. Then I kick them up the arse. Because it's not what they say or what they are, or even what they say they are, that gets my goat: it's the things they actually do to us in our name."

From Media Guardian: "Lord Justice Eady on Monday also rejected a request by the footballer's legal team to be allowed to search emails and texts sent by former Sun editor Kelvin MacKenzie in relation to the injunction. Eady described the request as 'something of a sledgehammer to crack a nut'."

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