Unveiling BBC talent’s pay is a deliberate attempt to undermine a great British institution – Steven Barnett

20 07 2017

Anyone who seriously believes that a government dictat obliging the BBC to reveal salaries of its top talent was genuinely driven by concerns about accountability should look carefully at those who champion the cause. Read the rest of this entry »





Fox, Sky and Murdoch: will Bradley have the courage to resist? – Steven Barnett

30 06 2017

Yesterday’s announcement by Culture Secretary Karen Bradley that she is “minded” to refer the bid by Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox to the Competition and Market Authority (CMA) is welcome. Read the rest of this entry »





Daily Mail vs The Guardian: why did editor Paul Dacre lose his rag? – Steven Barnett

24 06 2017
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“Words have consequences. They lead to actions.” So wrote Peter Oborne, the maverick right-leaning Daily Mail columnist about the shocking events in north London recently when a white van deliberately ran into a crowd of Muslims outside a mosque, killing one and injuring several others. Read the rest of this entry »





Press regulation: three reasons why a 30 year old campaign must continue – Steven Barnett

19 01 2017

National NewspapersWith the government’s consultation on whether to proceed with the section 40 cost-shifting incentives of the Leveson framework now closed, there will be a brief political pause. Neither that consultation nor the intense political manoeuvring that is likely to follow should distract us from the long-standing and urgent need to tackle reform of press regulation in order to protect both the public and public interest journalism. Read the rest of this entry »





Murdoch Sky bid is a nasty Christmas headache for the culture secretary – Steven Barnett

21 12 2016

Six years after his first frustrated bid to take full ownership of Sky, Rupert Murdoch is seeking once again to capture the 61% he doesn’t already own. In 2011, the bid from Murdoch’s News Corporation (for what was then BSkyB) was first referred to Ofcom, then derailed by the phone hacking scandal. Read the rest of this entry »





Impress vs IPSO: A chasm, not a cigarette paper – Steven Barnett

30 10 2016

ipso-vs-impress-collage-e1477660796395-800x601In his blog last week the editor of the Press Gazette argued that there was “barely a cigarette paper’s worth of difference” between would-be press regulators IPSO and Impress.  If only. In truth, there is a chasm between the two which would take an essay to enumerate. Here are just four fundamental differences. Read the rest of this entry »





History repeated as IPSO morphs into the PCC – Steven Barnett

25 10 2016

sir-alan-mosesAnyone reading last week’s newspaper editorials  in newspapers such as the Mail or the Telegraph will know that our press is anxious. This week, the independent Press Recognition Panel – established by Parliament as part of the post-Leveson framework – is meeting to decide whether to confer recognition status on Impress, a self-regulator established in order to meet the Charter criteria for genuinely effective and independent self-regulation. Read the rest of this entry »