“Widespread and Habitual” Hacking at Mirror

Today the High Court was told:

“The evidence demonstrates that voicemail interception, as well as the unlawful obtaining of personal information by blagging or use of private investigators, was in widespread and habitual use by a large number of journalists across all three MGN titles.”

The Guardian reports:

“Between June 2002 and mid-2006, Sherborne said MGN journalists made nearly 10,000 phone hacking calls to Orange’s voicemail platform.

There are reporting restrictions in place.

Press Ethics Crusaders Strangely Silent on Mirror Hacking

Mirror[1]

A national newspaper group today admits that “some years ago voicemails left on certain people’s phones were unlawfully accessed” and that it “apologises publicly to all its victims of phone hacking”. Yet for some reason the Leader of the Opposition is not calling for a Commons debate and a judge-led inquiry, and past crusaders for press ethics turned Mirror columnists, Tom Watson and John Prescott, are silent. How can Prezza, the victim turned scourge of phone hackers, work for the very people who hacked phones? What is about his grand-a-week column that makes him turn a blind eye to the criminality of his paymasters? What about Hacked Off? There is nothing about hacking at Trinity Mirror on the front page of their website this morning. The humblest day of their lives…

UPDATE I (11.42) Hacked Off have belatedly noticed the Mirror’s front page, over an hour after we clipped their ears for their silence.

UPDATE II

Gove’s Jag Snag: Red Box Missing From Footage

At his speech in Westminster this morning, Grant Shapps was quick to point out that he had not driven the 400m from CCHQ to the Institute of Directors in “a government car”, nor was he willing to get drawn “into commenting on individual’s car use”.

Andrew Mitchell, for example, refused a car when he was in the same job. Both Gove’s people and the Cabinet Office are kicking back hard at the Mirror’s splash today, claiming that the car was carrying important government papers for the Chief Whip. Gove is holding a folder in the footage, but there does not seem to be any sign of his red box – in which official documents are kept – neither when Gove got in nor out of the car.

Decide for yourselves here.

Leon Brittan Buried in Accordance With Jewish Customs

The Telegraph, Mirror, Metro and Mail have all followed up Exaro’s top scoop that Leon Brittan has been buried in an unmarked grave for fear it would be vandalised. The MailOnline headline has however since been changed with no explanation, though the URL remains the same:

Why the subtle change? As is being pointed out this morning, and as the new Mail copy states: “In accordance with Jewish tradition, the former home secretary is said to have been interred in an simple plot without flowers in Golders Green Cemetery”.

Wonder what other assumptions Exaro have failed to check…

Bi-Textual:  Letter Is Cut ‘N Paste Job
Sham Business Endorsement Written by Chuka

Goldman Sachs predator turned Olympics boss Charles Allen has a letter in the Mirror today praising Labour’s plans for British business. It does not mention he’s actually the Chairman of Executive Board of the Labour Party, but who cares for such details. The letter is so generous it could almost have been written by Chuka Umunna. In fact, it was.

Lord Allen, ennobled by Labour, uses the exact same words in his letter as this article by Chuka for LabourList last year:

Allen: “We cannot and we should not push Britain towards the EU exit door or putting Britain’s future at risk for the sake of party management.”

Chuka: “Not pushing Britain towards the EU exit door or putting Britain’s future at risk for the sake of party management.”

Allen: “This plan means creating a new high-quality technical baccalaureate to give our young people the skills they need, with all young people studying English and Maths until they are 18.”

Chuka: “Creating a new high-quality technical baccalaureate to give our young people the skills they need, with all young people studying English and Maths until they are 18.”

Allen: “It means more rigorous standards so that apprenticeships last a minimum of two years and using the money the government spends to create new opportunities by requiring suppliers on large contracts to offer apprenticeships.”

Chuka: “More rigorous standards so that apprenticeships last a minimum of two years and are level three qualifications, and using the money the government spends on procurement to create new opportunities by requiring suppliers on large contracts to offer apprenticeships.”

Allen: “It means investing for the long term and making sure businesses of all sizes can get access to the finance they need to grow, with a proper British Investment Bank supported by a network of regional banks.”

Chuka: “It means investing for the long term and making sure businesses of all sizes can get access to the finance they need to grow, with a proper British Investment Bank supported by a network of regional banks.”

Allen: “It means giving the Green Investment Bank – initiated by the last Labour government – borrowing powers to enable it to support low-carbon industries of tomorrow.”

Chuka: “Giving the Green Investment Bank – initiated by the last Labour government – borrowing powers to enable it to support low-carbon industries of tomorrow.”

Allen: “But most importantly it means an open, outward-facing approach to the world: engaging positively with our European partners and reforming the EU so it is more focused on growth.”

Chuka: “It means an open, outward-facing approach to the world: engaging positively with our European partners, reforming the EU so it is more focused on growth.”

Where’s Bill Somebody when you need him? 

Guardian’s Small Correction & Clarification

coulson-correction

Over page after page last summer the Guardian splashed on the front page of G2 about the baby-eating antics of News of the World journalists. Today hidden back on page 32 a small clarification reveals allegations were untrue. Notice how the Guardian is currently now splashing page after page, day after day, about the Daily Mirror’s corporate malfeasance and multi-million pay outs to hacked celebs? Nope.

Ex-Sunday Mirror Hack Pleads Guilty to Phone Hacking in 2001
“Shown By Senior Person How to Access Voicemails”

Graham Johnson is the first Mirror employee to plead guilty to hacking, admitting he accessed the voicemails of a celeb in October 2001 after being “shown by a senior person in a supervisory capacity how to” do so.

Reporting restrictions have been placed on a number of leading media names until tomorrow…

WATCH: Newmark Story Was Not Entrapment

Fleetstreet Fox’s defence of the Sunday Mirror’s Brooks Newmark story on Question Time last night is worth watching. Critics who have not read the original story and trigger happy IPSO bosses should watch:

“I think in this particular case that it’s not entrapment because Mr Newmark, if you’ve read the original article, responded to this journalist, which he thought was a young woman online, by firstly offering his mobile phone number, secondly going into private messages, and then on seven occasions seeking explicit photographs from her, and on another three occasions asking to meet her. Now that doesn’t sound to me like someone who was reluctant or who needed persuading, it sounds to me like someone who was quite enthusiastic with the opportunity to misbehave, and he grabbed it with one hand while lowering his pyjama trousers with the other one.

“I think there are two issues that would make this in the public interest. One of those is one of the messages that Brooks Newmark sent was “you send me a picture and I will send you one, that way we both have a secret”. Now if that were you and me, it doesn’t matter. A government minister who has security clearance, that’s an invitation to blackmail, and corruption. Under the Ministerial Code of Conduct that alone would be a reason to resign… A man with power and wealth and influence repeatedly, not once or twice, sought explicit photographs from what he thought was a young woman who had no power or wealth or influence, and if she had been the young activist that he thought she was, he would have had the power to influence her career for better or for worse. To me, that smells like exploitation and it’s certainly abuse of power.”

Notable that Grant Shapps also refused to say Newmark was entrapped…

Trinity Mirror CEO Blasts Brooks Newmark Story Critics
Buzzfeed, Telegraph Criticised for Revealing Innocents’ Names

brooks-newmark-mirror-frontpage

Trinity Mirror CEO Simon Fox has put out an extremely robust defence of the Sunday Mirror/Brooks Newmark story:

“Whilst this has attracted a barrage of negative comment and the threat of an IPSO investigation, we believe that we were

[…]

+ READ MORE +

Not So Pronto IPSO

IPSO’s Sir Alan Moses is in a rush for the three weeks-old new press regulator to get to the bottom of our Brooks Newmark investigation published in the Sunday Mirror. For the record and the avoidance of doubt, Alex […]

+ READ MORE +

Media Movements: James Lyons to Sunday Times

Congratulations to the Mirror’s James Lyons, who has landed the Deputy Political Editor gig at the Sunday Times. Lyons is hardly short of a few bob having […]

+ READ MORE +

Nigel Evans Makes £21,000 From Post-Sex Trial Media Interviews

Cleared Nigel Evans was paid £21,000 for selling the story of his trial to the press. Evans is being paid £1762.50 a month until June 2015 by management company Exclusive Press & Publicity, in respect of three media engagements with […]

+ READ MORE +



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Quote of the Day

William Hague on Tony Blair…

“To the political law that you can’t fool all of the people all of the time he added Blair’s law – that you can make a very serious attempt at it.”

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