Wednesday, August 13, 2014

No Tragedy Hacked Off Won’t Exploit

Hacked Off would never exploit a tragedy to launch an opportunistic PR campaign to promote themselves in the media, would they? Arriving in journalists’ inboxes this morning came a headline-grabbing Hacked Off press release demanding the chair of IPSO, the new press regulator, condemn “breaches” of the PCC Editor’s Code over the Robin Williams story today. Hacked Off director Joan Smith spent the day offering herself for comment. Don’t all rush at once…

Incidentally, whatever you think of the coverage, it doesn’t even appear that the front pages did breach the Editor’s Code. Media law consultant David Banks explains:

Another great Hacked Off success…

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Hacked Off Seek EU Diktat to Force Through New Press Laws
Watson Backs Brussels Directive on Media Ownership

After Sajid Javid signalled that he wanted to put the issue of press regulation “to bed”, Hacked Off last night called for an EU directive to force through new laws and overrule the Culture Secretary. Evan Harris and Natalie Fenton, two of the group’s directors, endorsed a new campaign aiming to secure a petition of one million signatures and seek a diktat from Brussels to set limits on media ownership at a European level.

The campaign, which has the somewhat sinister name ‘Reclaim the Media’, is backed by the Green MP Caroline Lucas, the National Union of Journalists, the Trades Union Council and Labour’s Tom Watson, who was due to chair last night’s meeting but failed to attend after he was “unavoidably detained in his constituency”Evan Harris’ face told you everything you need to know about the prospects for Hacked Off’s latest doomed venture…

Click to enlarge.

MediaGuido was particularly interested by a series of graphs provided at the meeting. Reclaim the Media’s campaign for plurality focuses on the Murdoch and Rothermere titles, despite their own evidence showing that it is actually the BBC that enjoys unrivalled dominance in the news industry. Confused Labour MP John McDonnell suggested the motives were personal: “there are thousands of asylum seekers locked up because the government is pandering to the racism of the Daily Mail”, adding that MPs were “petrified by the bucket of sh*t that The Sun pours on you”. Yet according to their own evidence it isn’t the Mail or the Sun that threaten press plurality, it is the BBC…

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Brian Cathcart’s Journey

Brian Cathcart, the painfully tedious professor who runs celebrity lobbyists Hacked Off, never ceases to talk about journalistic intrusion into private grief and exploitation of tragedy. Just last week he was extolling the virtues of the Royal Charter for press regulation, saying it would end such behaviour. Guido has always thought the public, rather than failed journalists turned pseudo-academics and politicians, should be the judge of what is appropriate and vote with their wallets if they find such behaviour distasteful. Cathcart himself should know more than anyone that the public are good judges of this sort of thing.

Take for example his own 2001 book ‘Jill Dando: Her Life and Death’ that ‘recounts Jill Dando’s development from gawky schoolgirl to glamorous celebrity’:

‘She was attractive, successful and, at the age of 37, about to marry the man she loved. Then, with a single bullet to the head, on her own doorstep, and in broad daylight, she became Britain’s most famous murder victim.’

What would Hacked Off have to say if say about a newspaper asked of the dead ‘the key question: Was she what she seemed?’ The public have had their say though; Amazon lists the book for a measly £1.97, though bargain hunters should note that there ‘63 used copies from £0.01’. As the caustic Tabloid Troll says: ‘I suppose the one saving grace for the Dando family is that this man is nowhere near victims of our publishing media nowadays’. Another tragedy for him to capitalise on?


Seen Elsewhere

Cam Cannot Stem EU Immigration | David Keighley
9 Mansion Tax Questions for Ed Balls | TPA
Politicians are Lying to You About Immigration | Alex Wickham
Give Journalists Public Interest Defence in Law | Guardian
Cameron is Going to Have to Deal With UKIP | Dan Hodges
Opinions on Key Issues By Constituency | Red Box
Britain Irrelevant Inside EU | Dan Hannan
Cameron Heading for Fall on Europe | Rachel Sylvester
Lords Speaker Spends £350 on Two Mile Limo Ride | Sun
Shapps Slaps Down Barroso “Propaganda” | City AM
Bookies v Pollsters: What We Learned From IndyRef | Paddy Power


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Chris Bryant talks to the Times Diary about a famous gay actor:

“I don’t think I’ve had sex with him. He says we had sex in Clapham. I’m fairly certain I’ve never had sex south of the river”



Progressive Inclusion Champion says:

Great to hear Carswell call for inclusive policies and that UKIP must stand for first and second generation immigrants as much as the English.


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