Exam date

When's the 2016 exam? Wednesday 8th June, am.

Thursday, 24 March 2016

WEB Latest Twitter arrest rxposes unregulated web myth

Man who confronted Muslim woman to 'explain' Brussels attacks arrested http://gu.com/p/4hztg?CMP=Share_AndroidApp_Blogger

Wednesday, 23 March 2016

PRIVACY PRESS LAW courts doing IPSO's job?

HUGE story, and I'll develop this post in time for 2016 exams as a core case study.

Whilst wider than the complaints-based PCC, IPSO's remit is typically narrow, one limitation on its potential to be an effective, inactive regulator. It will not, for example, consider ownership - one of Chomsky's five filters in the propaganda model.

A judge has just dramatically toughened press regulation through a court case.

Such are the profound implications - what future is there for the tabs stripped of the kiss and tell? - that this case is bound to run to multiple appeals, with The Sun the paper injuncted from publishing and Murdoch bound to resist a ruling that rips the heart out of his cash cow's core appeal.

He'd be wary of going beyond UK courts though, with EU rulings on privacy notably tougher on the media's freedom to publish and sympathetic to the individual's right to privacy - one of the reasons the Murdoch press is so vigorously, viciously anti-EU (not exactly a democratic position - but hey, while there's no regulator to look at ownership or to seriously consider biased reporting...).

Whilst it's always tempting to celebrate any diminishing of tabloid power, there is a major democratic issue at stake. UK laws, and court rulings form law until Parliament decides to pass statutes overriding these, have a tendency to be applied far beyond their original purpose.

The Murdoch-led twisting of the public interest defence into the free market 'whatever the public is interested in' was attacked by Calcutt and Leveson, and the Culture Select Committee to boot.

Nonetheless, ANY limitation on press freedom needs to be very carefully assessed and scrutinised. For this celebrity couple today read a politician tomorrow ... centuries of progress following the abolition of the Star Chamber and the later Fox's Libel Law reforms being reversed; the rich and powerful being handed a new gag on unfavourable media coverage?

As I said, a HUGE story...

The injunction is back: entertainer blocks extramarital affair story http://gu.com/p/4hn8m?CMP=Share_AndroidApp_Blogger

Wednesday, 16 March 2016


PCC history;
Buzz timeline 1953-2013;
LE-ac-uk multiple links (this is for an initial summary of historical background);
HistoryandPolicy-org Seventy years of the unsolved press regulation problem;
Parliamentary Report: press regulation since WW2;
Wiki: history of British newspapers;
Wiki: history of UK freedom of the press;
NewsMedia-UK: history of British Newspapers;

Wednesday, 9 March 2016

DISCRIMINATION Matrix director accuses Mail of trans outing pressure

Let's be very clear: the Mail has put out a very specific denial. Nonetheless, a useful story as it puts the discrimination clause into focus in 2016, with a useful reference to a 2013 case when a coroner criticised the paper for its coverage of a trans teacher who committed suicide after being attacked in a Richard Littlejohn Mail column.

Furthermore, it highlights the complex globalised nature of the supposed UK press - this was a story about the paper's US website; difficult for IPSO to get involved with.

Daily Mail denies trying to force Matrix director to come out as trans woman http://gu.com/p/4hdkc?CMP=Share_AndroidApp_Blogger

IPSO royal stamp while Impress slammed

In Publishers object to Impress's attempt to gain charter recognition you can read about the NMA (News Media Association, representing the UK press) and their 45 page response to the attempt by Impress to get a royal charter. They are not happy that this would mean Leveson proposals coming in for the entire industry (especially fines and legal fees) and point out that Impress only regulates a handful of hyper-local papers and is funded almost exclusively by one private donor, Max Mosley (who sued the Murdoch press for invasion of privacy) ... AND doesn't have a published code of conduct.

Meantime the Queen has formally complained to IPSO for the first time, a high profile seal of approval for the regulator, over the inaccuracy (Editor's Code Clause 1: Accuracy) of The S*n's page 1 lead "Queen backs Brexit".
Seems one is not amused by this.

That story has legs - The Sun are confident their story IS accurate; this could turn from being the Establishment seal of approval to a bitter, rather serious (it raises constitutional issues over the neutrality of the monarchy and, potentially, the thorny issue of protecting press sources' privacy and identity) political row. Big stakes.

Here's a third story from today (4 if you look at the trans outing post) highlighting the complexity of press regulation, and why the PCC was recognised as a failure: sportsman going to the courts, not the regulator, to seek justice, and getting a printed apology and a libel payout.

Sunday, 6 March 2016

BBC OfCom switch boosts political control?

Peter Preston, Guardian grandee, provides a solid run through of the issues around political appointments to PSB broadcasters boards (he notes an experienced privatising executive has just been appointed to C4 as lobby briefings make it clear the Tories want to sell off C4, this isn't just a BBC issue), including some historical examples.

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

BBC huge public survey says gov should back off

A government survey has seen its plans to shift BBC regulation to OfCom and to downsize the corporation rejected by overwhelming numbers in an exceptionally large public response.
It's media rivals, unsurprisingly, were all for both! Sky, for example, was full of praise for the wonderful job OfCom does!

MEP Bill Etheridge, who suggested the national broadcaster should be sold off.Etheridge said: “Ladies and gentleman, I’m so glad we have coverage here for this tonight because I know how much they are going to enjoy this: I want the BBC privatised. We pay taxpayers’ money to have leftwing propaganda rammed down our throats.”He said the BBC should “stop picking our pockets to feed us this stuff that we don’t want to hear”.