Trinity Mirror finally admits what we all knew, but will it change anything? – Brian Cathcart

25 09 2014

TrinityMirrorPerhaps the sleaziest aspect of Trinity Mirror’s phone hacking confession is the emphasis placed on the idea that the offences took place ‘many years ago’. For while it is true that we have had to wait years for confirmation that reporters at the company’s papers broke the law in this way, that delay was in large measure the fault of the company’s management. Read the rest of this entry »





Faking Change: a brief history of IPSO – Brian Cathcart

9 09 2014

Murdoch and IPSOThe Independent Press Standards Organisation (“IPSO”) began, as it could only have begun, in disaster. Nothing less could have stirred the men who own and run Britain’s big national newspaper groups to alter in any way a system of ‘self-regulation‘ that had protected their interests so well for decades. Read the rest of this entry »





Three key reasons why the Royal Charter is better for journalists than IPSO – Brian Cathcart

13 08 2014

newspaper+stand_0The Royal Charter on Self-Regulation of the Press was sealed on 30 October 2013.  It has widespread public and political support.  And, most importantly, it is better for journalists than the newspaper proprietors’ latest regulatory fig leaf, IPSO.  There are three key reasons for this. Read the rest of this entry »





Hislop, Coogan and the question of who really stands for free expression – Brian Cathcart

24 06 2014

Coogan HislopIan Hislop and his Private Eye colleague Francis Wheen have resigned as patrons of Index on Censorship in protest at the appointment of Steve Coogan, apparently on the grounds that Coogan’s association with Hacked Off makes him an enemy of free expression. Read the rest of this entry »





Jagger coverage shows how papers ignore the Editors’ Code when it suits them – Brian Cathcart

19 03 2014

Jagger ScottThe Editors’ Code of Practice for journalists, which the Press Complaints Commission (PCC) is supposed to enforce, includes as Clause 5(1): ‘In cases involving personal grief or shock, enquiries and approaches must be made with sympathy and discretion and publication handled sensitively.’ Read the rest of this entry »





Appeasing dictators will not help press freedom – Brian Cathcart

4 03 2014

State Control of PressThe suggestion is occasionally made (see herehere  and here) that Britain should think again about its new Royal Charter on press self-regulation because foreign dictators or authoritarian governments have cited it, or may cite it, as a justification for censorship. Read the rest of this entry »





Hearing no evil: the IPSO panel covers its ears – Brian Cathcart

27 02 2014

Sir Hayden PhillipsHaving refused to meet Hacked Off, Sir Hayden Phillips, the man in charge of appointments to the big press groups’ planned son-of-PCC, now wants to opt out of email correspondence with Hacked Off and victims of press abuses. Read the rest of this entry »








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