Friday, March 7, 2014

Media Movements: Janine Gibson Heir Apparent to Rusbridger

Hotly tipped by MediaGuido in the past, Janine Gibson is coming home from the US to be deputy editor of Guardian News & Media and editor-in-chief of the Guardian website. Cementing her position as the heir apparent to Alan Rusbridger. Fair play to her for celebrating her good news appropriately:

Gibson’s main rival to the job Katharine Viner replaces Gibson as US editor, leaving her position in Australia. She is replaced by Emily Wilson, who was UK network editor of the Guardian website. Rusbridger spent an hour today explaining the moves to some hundred staff who, according to reports, were not too happy…

Privately educated Janine has previously been media editor and editor of the G3 supplement, so as a candidate she is from outside of news and features but is more than just a techie. The promotion leaves her back in Kings Place and in line for the throne…

Friday, January 3, 2014

Pardon Snowden, He Blew Whistle on NSA Crimes

pardon-snowden

Ed Snowden has been demonised by some on the right as a traitor. Those on the right don’t as a rule put their trust in governments and Snowden is a patriotic, freedom loving libertarian, not a Russian or Chinese dupe, as some conservatives seem to believe. (He even donated $250 to Ron Paul’s election campaign.) His motivation was ideological and principled – it has cost him his personal freedom and his career. People who Guido would normally expect to side with the cause of liberty have focused on the medium not the message – because it was Alan Rusbridger’s Guardian that broke the story they have got their backs up. Whatever right-minded people think of the Guardian, it was disgraceful to hear Rusbridger’s patriotism questioned by a Select Committee over him publishing the Snowden story.

Ed Snowden was as the New York Times argued yesterday clearly justified in believing that the only way to blow the whistle on the blanket intelligence-gathering was to “expose it to the public and let the resulting furor do the work“, revealing what his bosses covered-up and lied to Congress about. Beyond the mass collection of phone and internet data Snowden revealed:

  • The NSA (aided and abetted by GCHQ) broke the law, and exceeded their authority, thousands of times per year.
  • The NSA (aided and abetted by GCHQ) broke into the communications links of Microsoft, Google, Yahoo, Facebook and other internet giants, allowing it to spy on hundreds of millions of user accounts. Many of those companies are now, thankfully, scrambling to install systems that the NSA cannot yet penetrate.
  • The NSA systematically undermined the basic encryption systems of the internet, making it impossible to know if sensitive banking or medical data is truly private, damaging businesses that depended on this trust. Ironically this opened back doors that could also be used by hostile intelligence agencies.
  • His leaks revealed that James Clapper Jr., the director of national intelligence, lied to Congress when testifying in March.
  • The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court rebuked the N.S.A. for repeatedly providing misleading information about its surveillance practices, according to a ruling made public because of the Snowden documents. One of the practices violated the Constitution, according to the chief judge of the court.
  • A federal judge ruled earlier this month that the phone-records-collection programme probably violates the Fourth Amendment of the US Constitution. He called the programme “almost Orwellian” and said there was no evidence that it stopped any imminent act of terror.

When someone reveals that government officials have routinely and deliberately broken the law, that person should not face life in prison at the hands of the same government. Rick Ledgett, who leads the NSA’s task force on the Snowden leaks, told CBS News that he would consider amnesty if Snowden halted any additional leaks. President Obama should do just that, bring Snowden home. He is a hero.

Hat-tip: New York Times

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Rusbridger Round-Up

So the Guardian did share the names of intelligence officers abroad. Other than that Rusbridger gets through it relatively unscathed…

Good Luck, Alan!

The Guardian NUJ chapel has sent a cute message of support to Alan Rusbridger ahead of his select committee showdown this afternoon. Approved by a committee of twelve, on behalf of all 500 odd Guardian journalists, of course.

“Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger is due to appear before the House of Commons home affairs select committee tomorrow to answer questions about our publication of the NSA and GCHQ surveillance revelations leaked by the US whistleblower Edward Snowden.

The Guardian and Observer NUJ chapel, representing the overwhelming majority of journalists at both titles, strongly supports the editor’s decision to publish this information of vital public interest and his defence of the freedom of the press to hold government and corporate interests to account.

The chapel emphatically rejects the attacks on the Guardian over the Snowden leaks and welcomes the support offered from all over the world for the Guardian’s role in bringing this information into the public domain.

We believe publication of the NSA/GCHQ stories is exactly what independent media organisations should be doing. The editor’s stand has the full backing and confidence of Guardian News and Media journalists.”

Guido agrees, there should be no question of the freedom of the press to hold government and corporate interests to account. Funny though, that they didn’t mention the alleged sending of British intelligence officers’ names abroad. No doubt Keith Vaz will get to the bottom of it. Tune in here

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Guardian Bosses Threaten to Kill Newspaper
Rusbridger Frozen Out as All-Digital Operation Considered

Rusbridger’s broadband poll tax was laughed all the way out of Guardian HQ when it was floated through David Leigh last month, the family silver is being sold off and up to seventy hacks face the sack. Now media analysts are reporting that, for the first time, the paper’s bosses are seriously considering ditching the print edition altogether in favour of an all-digital operation. Rusbridger has been left isolated by the Scott Trust, GNM’s owners, and is reportedly close to becoming the only person left on the company’s board opposed to signing the newspaper’s death warrant. This could be the beginning of the end…

UPDATE: Rusbridger himself says it’s untrue.

Never believe anything until it’s officially denied…

Monday, September 24, 2012

The Guardian’s Poll Tax Moment

Yesterday the Guardian‘s very own ‘public-interest’ phone-hacker David Leigh announced a salvation plan for the beleaguered paper: a £2-a-month levy on every household broadband bill to bail out bankrupt newspapers. That’s right, they aren’t making money because people are not buying their papers, so they are now demanding a bailout. Leigh’s proposal argues:

“A small levy on UK broadband providers – no more than £2 a month on each subscriber’s bill – could be distributed to news providers in proportion to their UK online readership. This would solve the financial problems of quality newspapers, whose readers are not disappearing, but simply migrating online. There are almost 20m UK households that are paying upwards of £15 a month for a good broadband connection, plus another 5m mobile internet subscriptions. People willingly pay this money to a handful of telecommunications companies, but pay nothing for the news content they receive as a result, whose continued survival is generally agreed to be a fundamental plank of democracy. A £2 levy on top – collected easily from the small number of UK service providers (BT, Virgin, Sky, TalkTalk etc) who would add it on to consumers’ bills – would raise more than £500 million annually. It could be collected by a freestanding agency, on the lines of the BBC licence fee, and redistributed automatically to “news providers” according to their share of UK online readership.”

The irony of this suggestion coming from inside Guardian towers has not been lost on media commentators across the spectrum. Regular readers will be well-versed in the hypocrisy of the editor Alan Rusbridger, who is also a director of Guardian Media Group, overseeing editorials on tax avoidance, high pay and spending cuts whilst sitting on the parent company board which shelters assets and cash in the Caymans. Rusbridger trousers half-a-million pounds per year while staff are fired by the dozen. Now they want a bailout, a £2-a-month levy on every broadband user in the country is a tax that would be as regressive as they come. This is the Guardian’s poll tax moment.

Guido has been saying it for years, this is yet further evidence that the less popular newspapers are thrashing about in their final death throes. Under threat from an ever-stronger online industry much of the print media can no longer sustain itself. Paywalls kill readership, news content is almost always available for free and – in the age of Twitter – papers are reporting yesterday’s news. This year the Guardian made losses of £75.6 million. Roy Greenslade asks “has David Leigh cracked it?” A more appropriate question would be whether Leigh, and his paper, have finally cracked up.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Guardian Management Restructuring Announced
Prioritises Not-So-Dead-Tree Edition

Guido understands an email went out to Guardian staff yesterday informing them that there is to be a ‘management restructuring’.. to achieve ‘a renewed focus on protecting and developing our print revenue’. Managing the decline might be more accurate.

Guido’s source thinks this is Rusbridger and the controlling clique on the board realising he’s spent shedloads too much on his over-staffed online folie de grandeur and presages a shift back to basics – the dead tree edition of the Guardian still brings in 75% of the revenue. For now…

UPDATE: Meanwhile the Guardian‘s head of media has been analysing the lads’ mag market.

If he’s using that logic for Nuts and co., he might want to have a look at the figures showing his own paper’s decline. In June the Guardian sold 211,911 copies, a 17.5% drop year-on-year.  Things are not all fine and Dandy… 

Friday, January 20, 2012

Exclusive: ‘Ello ‘ Ello ‘Ello
Rusbridger’s Secret Metropolitan Police Commissioner Meeting

Despite Amelia Hill, his crime reporter, being investigated over her rather inappropriate relationship with a police officer, Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger thought it fit to have an undisclosed meeting with Hogan Howe, the Metropolitan Police Commissioner yesterday. We’re making this public today because the Guardian was very tight-lipped about it when Guido put it to them yesterday and refused to confirm or deny the meeting happened. We have now double confirmed it via our unofficial and official sources in the Metropolitan Police.

Alan Rusbridger and deputy editor Ian Katz were both at the meeting. Given that it was at 11 a.m. yesterday, alcohol wasn’t a problem, but Guido hopes that in view of the recently issued official advice to coppers on dealing with journalists, that there wasn’t any flirting. The Guardian have had twenty-four hours, but are still not commenting. Just imagine their front page splash if they had discovered that the Sun’s editor Dominic Mohan had met secretly with Hogan Howe…

See also: Ethical Issues Arising From The Relationship Between Police and Media

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Rusbridger’s Sworn Statement Misleads Leveson Over Hacking

In his sworn statement the editor of the Guardian, Alan Rusbridger, tells Lord Justice Leveson that to the best of his knowledge he has never used or commissioned anyone who had used “computer hacking”. Here is the extract from Rusbridger’s witness statement:

Except Patrick Foster on the Guardian media pages. He has twice been caught hacking computers. The latest incident was the disgraceful hacking of the police blogger NightJack’s Hotmail account. The Orwell Prize winning blogger was outed by Patrick Foster when he was on media correspondent of The Times. This was up there with his Oxford undergraduate days when the student rag had to be pulped after he identified the victim of a gay rape. Foster was subsequently fired from The Times on an unrelated matter and now freelances for the Guardian. It is an open secret that Patrick Foster was Guardian Media editor Dan Sabbagh’s nark source at The Times for many “inside Wapping” stories and that The Times’ management eventually figured this out and fired him under another pretext.

Rusbridger really ought to correct his sworn statement to reflect the truth.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Ebenezer Rusbridger Cancels Christmas

Last year the Guardian Media Group lost over £54 million, but that didn’t stop the Editor at Large Alan Rusbridger taking home a cheeky £605,000. Revenue was down from £221 million to £198.2 millon across the group. The Guardian and The Observer’s lost £38.3 million. As a result Christmas has been cancelled. Last year all the hacks were asked for a £20 contribution to the Christmas lunch, but things have got so bad that this year there is no Christmas lunch. Not even a Winterval drink…

UPDATE:


Seen Elsewhere

Ex-Sun Hack Cleared After 582 Days on Bail | MediaGuido
11 Times Boris Denied He Would Stand for Parliament | Buzzfeed
Attacking UKIP’s Posters is Counter-Productive | Guardian
Sarkozy Tried it on With Hollande’s Ex | Times
Another Spare Room Subsidy Cut Success | Harry Phibbs
Rich Now Have Less Leisure Than Poor | Economist
UKIP’s Immigration Policy Promotes Migrant Entrepreneurs | Breitbart
Another Feminist Lecture | Laura Perrins
UKIP Posters Bad Economics But Good Politics | James Delingpole
Tories Losing to UKIP in Scotland | ConHome
UKIPers Will Come Home in 2015 | Sun


new-advert
Guido-hot-button (1) Guido-hot-button (1)


A confused Nick Griffin says Nigel Farage is a shill for the City, forgetting that City banks want to stay in the EU:

“Farage is a snake oil salesman, but a very good one. His supposed anti-immigration stance is all smoke and mirrors, as is his carefully cultivated image as a ‘man of the people’. The truth is that UKIP is a pro-immigration party that exists to lobby for the interests of the City of London.”



Alexrod says:

It’s money innit.


Tip off Guido
Web Guido's Archives

Subscribe me to:






RSS


AddThis Feed Button
Archive


Labels
Guido Reads