Saturday Seven Up

This week 112,036 visitors made 383,684 visits to view 601,371 pages. Another big traffic week thanks to a packed domestic schedule and lots of American interest in a certain cocky Brit. The week began with huge hype over the Murdochs in the dock, and Monday and Tuesday was dominated by little else. Guido was quick to bring you the controversal emails between Downing Street and the Yard, as well as the fall out around that relationship. He also noted the silence from the Tory backbenches.  The Circular Firing Squad, as well an ever-swirling Piers Morgan situation has also brought readers in.

And as if that wasn’t enough for you, Chris Huhne was interviewed again by Essex Police. Only a matter of time before the file is passed to the CPS.

Favourites this week had to include Lord Kinnock’s bonkers plans to censor the free press, Ed’s guru’s rather close-minded views on immigration, a controversial government pay rise,as well as some old friends enjoying the cricket. The campaign to “Save Gobby” also tickled many.

The top  stories  in order of popularity were:

You’re either in front of Guido, or you are behind…

Sunday Mirror’s Tina Weaver Isn’t “Fit and Proper” for the PCC

Those of you following Guido on Twitter will know that for weeks Guido has been using the hashtag #CircularFiringSquad to drip out names of journalists from other newspaper groups, in particular the Mirror group, who are as guilty as those arrested at the News of the World. Illegal hacking and blagging, with no public interest defence, has been endemic at Mirror titles. Last night on BBC Newsnight they produced testimony from former employees that at the Sunday Mirror

  • they hired a voiceover artist to imitate celebrities to blag information
  • they “saw Liz Hurley’s phone being hacked and a reporter listen to her mobile phone messages”
  • Ex-Sunday Mirror journalist Richard Watson confirmed hacking took place “pretty much every day”

Last week this blog reported on the record accusations against Tina Weaver, editor of the Sunday Mirror, that she was at the heart of a culture of journalistic illegality. Max Keiser claimed that she personally told him in 2002 about Piers Morgan’s working knowledge of phone hacking – at a time when he was editor of the Daily Mirror. Guido has extensively reported allegations against Piers Morgan dating back to his time at the Daily Mirror which have been followed up worldwide. We have reported testimony that when Mark Thomas was editor of the Sunday People, he was according to Guido’s source – who is a household name, “the biggest phone hacking enthusiast”. The evidence of the Information Commissioner against the Mirror group is compelling.

If it turns out that Sly Bailey’s Mirror group was a criminal enterprise, they will have to face the consequences, with a market capitalisation of only £140 million and damages that could mount up to tens of millions the consequence could be bankruptcy. Plus jail time…

Meantime, and until the due process of the law takes its slow course, Guido thinks it beyond credibility that Tina Weaver is a member of the self-regulatory Press Complaints Commission. Tina should step down.

On a personal note, if Mirror group newspapersgo after Louise Mensch MP, as they are openly threatening to do, they will be making a big mistake. She sits on the DCMS Select Committee and is determined to widen their inquiries out to other newspapers beyond the News of the World. Tina and Sly should remember that it was a similar threat by Rebekah Brooks against Tom Watson that eventually led to News International being brought to crisis point. Louise is just as tough as Tom…



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Quote of the Day

Out of the bubble prole Andy Burnham tells Mumsnet

“I’m afraid I’m going to depress you all by saying that I don’t have a sweet tooth and don’t eat biscuits… Give me a beer and chips and gravy any day.”

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