Friday, October 4, 2013

Miliband’s Forced “Decency”

If Miliband’s Mail-bashing was really about sticking up for his dad, he would not have used jarring political lines about the “cost of living crisis” in his letter to Lord Rothermere yesterday. His interview with LabourList this morning betrays the real motivation for why Miliband and Alastair Campbell, who is at the centre of this, have gone after the Mail:

“What we’ve seen over the past five days is a symptom of that and it’s time he took a long hard look at the way his papers are run because I don’t believe that reflects the values of the British people.

“I want to know how these practices are allowed to happen. Not on the basis of being “one rogue reporter” or “one rogue editor”, but what is it about the culture and practice of the organisation that makes these kind of things acceptable?

If we’re going to have those massive debates about the cost of living, we need to have proper standards of decency in our press.”

This is about Leveson, the Royal Charter and state regulation of the press. Miliband believes it is for politicians to decide whether papers “reflect the values of the British people”. Read that as whether they reflect his values. He wants to know how papers are “allowed” to print opinion that he disagrees with, that he finds offensive. That last line, “we need to have proper standards of decency in our press”, is chilling. It shows an incredible mindset from Miliband that he feels it is a politician’s place to decide what constitutes “decency” in the media. As Fraser Nelson notes, next week the Privy Council meets to discuss newspapers’ attempt to prevent state regulation of the press. Hugh Grant and Hacked Off have already tried to hijack the story. Miliband’s timing is no coincidence…

Friday, May 3, 2013

Happy World Press Freedom Day

Aside from it being a breakthrough day for UKIP and a terrible one for the other three parties, today is also United Nations World Press Freedom Day. “Celebrating the fundamental principles of press freedom” and “defending the media from attacks on their independence”, the UN warn that “in dozens of countries around the world, publications are censored, fined, suspended and closed down, while journalists, editors and publishers are harassed, attacked, detained”.

Guido is sure the likes of Evan Harris, Hugh Grant, Max Mosley, Brian Cathcart, Steve Coogan, Tom Watson, David Cameron, Ed Miliband, Nick Clegg, Oliver Letwin, Maria Miller, Stuart Hall and Rolf Harris will be celebrating…

UPDATE : Perfect timing:

Thursday, April 25, 2013

You’ve Never Had It So Good

cathcartGovernment email watching ‘Snoopers Charter’: dead.

Government press regulating Royal Charter: dead.

Defamation Act 2013: Passed.

And some other good news:

“The word ‘insulting’ has been deleted from Section 5 of the Public Order Act.

And the sun is shining…

Friday, April 19, 2013

Victory: Guido’s Blog Will Remain Unregulated
Government Tells Evan Harris to “Blog Off”

MAX-SAYS-CUT-THE-WIRES

blogoff

Dr Evan Harris told all who would listen that he wanted this blog to be regulated, Max Mosley wanted the government to “cut the wires” of the internet for bloggers who didn’t submit to judicial censorship and the nutty Professor Brian Cathcart who mutters about freedom of the press while trying to stamp it out didn’t really engage. Well they have completely and utterly failed in their ambitions.

The government has announced that for-profit blogs which make less than £2 million will be exempt from the new system of press regulation and there would also be an exemption for blogs with fewer than 10 employees under the amendments to the Crime and Courts Bill. Which leaves plenty of room for Guido to expand his operations…

We would not in any event have gone along with a regime that attempted to put an unbearable and unjustified regulatory burden on us. This is not to say that Guido supports the legislation, it seems pretty unfair on small newspapers who will still be regulated and it means there is not a level playing field. There will, as Guido told Leveson, be a thriving unregulated free press and a withering regulated unfree press with one hand tied behind its back. You only have to consider the Rolf Harris story revealed on this blog three months ago and only today seen on the front pages of the newspapers…

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Cathcart Heckled Over Secret Hacked Off Donors

Guido has watched press hating media luvvie Brian Cathcart’s fall from his place as the darling of the regulation lobby to the masker of Hacked Off’s secretive billionaire backers with great amusement. Now Cathcart has been heckled by visitors to a literary festival demanding to know who is funding Hacked Off. After he refused to reveal the names of his donors, angry audience members shouted “answer the question!” Cathcart responded by betraying his true disdain for our newspapers:

cathcart“Our funds? It’s almost funny to be lectured on financial probity by newspapers. For example, the Telegraph, which is owned by a couple of brothers who live in a tax exile in the Channel Islands. To be lectured on probity by the Daily Mail, whose owner is, as far as I am aware, a non-dom, and the owner of The Times and The Sun, who, well, where would you start?”

Only it wasn’t the newspapers asking, but inconveniently a media ethics lecturer and members of the public. Not like Cathcart to let the facts get in the way of a bad story…

Friday, April 12, 2013

Hacked Off’s Billionaire Donor Channels More Cash

Last month Guido revealed that Hacked Off was being funded by billionaire Russian oligarchs the Lebedevs, via Simon Kellner’s ill-fated Journalism Foundation vanity project. This morning the Times confirms what Guido’s readers already knew. They report Hacked Off’s billionaire is ready to funnel more cash:

“Evgeny Lebedev, who is a personal friend of Hugh Grant, the actor and Hacked Off director, has decided that money pledged almost a year ago to a foundation he set up and then shut down should now go to the campaign… Mr Lebedev held a “gala evening” in May last year to raise money for the Journalism Foundation. The event was attended by, among others, several celebrity supporters of Hacked Off, including Grant and his former girlfriend Jemima Khan… A spokesman for Mr Lebedev said that a guest at the gala evening had pledged a donation specifically for work on strengthening public interest defences in law for journalism. A foundation source said that the donor was a male celebrity who asked for anonymity when pledging about £20,000 that he wanted to go to Hacked Off.”

Lebedev spent £600,000 on the now defunct Journalism Foundation vanity project, meaning there should be a sizeable chunk left over for Hacked Off…

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Gunboat for Guido

Just a week after Guido wrote in the Sun that they’d need to send a warship to regulate this blog, his local paper reports that an US aircraft carrier is on course for Wexford. Apparently talks are taking place for the vessel to be stationed of the Irish coast this summer for the fiftieth anniversary of JFK’s visit. They’ll never take us alive…

Monday, March 25, 2013

Lords Vote on Amendments As Press Charter Unravelling

Blog OffHow bad is it for the Hacked Off drafted Royal Charter’s prospects?

  • Lebedev, the owner of The Indy, the only paper with an editor keen on the press control Royal Charter, has said it is a bad idea.
  • Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger is suggesting delaying it all for a year.
  • The Economist has joined the Speccie, Staggers and Private Eye in shunning the new system.
  • Most of the big newspaper groups are looking less and less likely to go along with things as they stand.
  • Editors of local papers are livid that they will be brought into this regulatory quango when they are already under financial pressure.
  • The former campaign manager for Hacked Off has disowned the campaign -  “I wanted reform that understood the press, but some of them wanted reform that punished the press. They became more militant, more politically aggressive and I felt uncomfortable with it.”
  • Lawyers say the exemplary damages provision is in breach of Article 10 of the ECHR.
  • Bloggers from across the spectrum have united against the ill thought provisions.
  • Hacked Off now say that blog regulation was never their intention.*
  • Over the weekend there were tri-party talks to try and figure out how to exempt blogs – which Leveson never intended to regulate.

Still the political class may still ram it through the Lords this afternoon…

Lord Lucas has a sensible amendment to exempt blogs and small publishing enterprises:

LORD LUCAS

131C  At end insert— “Other publishers

9) A publisher who focuses on a specific locality or region and only reports national issues on an incidental basis that is relevant to such local or regional matters.”

131D  At end insert—  10) A publisher who operates as a non-charitable campaigning organisation and is publishing material incidental to the organisation’s aims and objectives.”

131E At end insert—  11 ) A publisher who does not exceed the definition of a small or medium- sized enterprise as defined in sections 382 and 465 of the Companies Act 2006.”

Just because the amendments are sensible and widely supported doesn’t mean they will pass…

*Evan Harris told the Open Rights Group that he wanted to see Guido regulated. Can’t imagine why…

Hacked Off Say Thanks to Secret Donors

You have to hand it to Brian Cathcart. Hacked Off’s self-styled nutty professor has summed up their secret donor dilemma in a typically self-important post this lunchtime:

“We do not regret accepting money to fund our activities from some people who did not want their donations made public. We understand and respect their desire to avoid the kind of hostile treatment that has been dished out to people who openly criticise the press, and we are grateful to them for their generosity. We are grateful too, to the very many generous people who have given money openly. We have been open from the outset about our funding.”

In other words thank you to the Billionaire Russian oligarchs, Gatsby-like Labour Lords and world-famous aristocrats that have donated. Despite Cathcart’s claim that they “have been open from the outset about our funding”, you only know their names thanks to Guido…

Friday, March 22, 2013

Lord Lucas Amendments in Full

Here are Lord Lucas’ three amendments to the Crime and Courts bill:

blogoff“A publisher who focuses on a specific locality or region and only reports national issues on an incidental basis that is relevant to such local or regional matters.

A publisher who operates as a non-charitable campaigning organisation and is publishing material incidental to the organisation’s aims and objectives.

A publisher who does not exceed the definition of a small or medium-sized enterprise as defined in Section 382 and 465 Companies Act 2006.”

Here we go…

Via @jimwaterson

Seen Elsewhere

Guardian April Fools Apology | Press Gazette
Jenni Russell and Her Child’s Godfather, Ed Miliband | Breitbart
Labour’s Left and Right are Growing Restive | Staggers
Corrupt, Incompetent UN Has No Right to Lecture Us | Dan Hannan
Mirror’s Lazy Lie | Guardian
Hungary’s Heir to Thatcher | Conservative Woman
Farage and Salmond Both Want Outopia | David Aaronovitch
More Missing UKIP Money | Times
Church Should Fight Evil of Welfare Dependency | Stephen Glover
1 in 16 Pick Up Infections in Filthy NHS Hospitals | Mail
Let’s Get Evangelical | David Cameron


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Rod Liddle on the loony UN sexism special rapporteur:

“There is more sexism in Britain than in any other country in the world, according to a mad woman who has been sent here by the United Nations.

Rashida Manjoo is a part-time professor of law at Cape Town University in the totally non-sexist country of South Africa (otherwise known as Rape Capital Of The World).

Mrs Magoo has been wandering around with her notebook and is appalled by the sexist “boys’ club” culture here, apparently.

I don’t doubt we still have sexism in the UK. But is it worse than in, say, Saudi Arabia, d’you think, honey-lamb? Or about 175 other countries? Get a grip, you doolally old bat.”



orkneylad says:

What’s he been doing FFS, mining bitcoins?


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