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 right to publish this story on public interest grounds.

If you have only read or heard the coverage rather than read The Sunday Mirror itself, you will have been left with a very wrong impression of what we did. Most importantly we did not publish any photographs of the women in the story. Nor did we list any names of any MPs other than Brooks Newmark.

The images of the women that you have seen widely reproduced were put there by other publications. The same goes for other MPs including those who have said that they will complain to IPSO.

Mr Brooks Newmark was not just an MP but a Minister (for civil society), with security clearance who took a role in foreign affairs and was co-founder for the campaign group ‘Women2Win’, an initiative designed to get more women into politics.

We acquired this story from a reputable freelance reporter who had set up a fake Twitter account as a Tory PR woman under the name of ‘Sophie’. She/he ‘followed’ on Twitter a number of MPs, celebrities and news organisations.

It is significant that it was Brooks Newmark who initiated the move away from the public forum and into private communication with ‘Sophie’. Since publication of our story and his resignation Mr Newmark has said that he ‘has nobody to blame but himself’.”

Ironically Guido understands that it is Buzzfeed and the Daily Telegraph who have attracted the ire of lawyers acting for parties unnamed by this blog or the Sunday Mirror. In fact one of those innocent parties will be writing for the Sunday Mirror about how she feels about her treatment at the hands of Buzzfeed and the Daily Telegraph..

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 Wickham – better known to our readers as WikiGuido – is a fine young journalist with more front page splashes to his name than some of his critics have had in their entire careers. His so-called sting – which was actually evidence gathering – was not an unauthorised operation. There will be no “rogue reporter defence”, it was an agreed plan.

Brooks Newmark was one of the founders of “Women2Win”, a campaign to get more Conservative women into politics. Newmark had a certain reputation among younger Tory women for being, for want of a better word, a bit of a creep. Think what his position gave him access to – ambitious, younger women. As with Lord Rennard that combination has obvious temptations.

MPs have been shown to be corrupt in the past by sting operations; Cash for Questions and Byers for Hire revealed MPs exploiting their positions for financial gain. How do our critics expect us to prove an MP is exploiting his position for carnal gain?

This was no fishing operation, it was a narrowly targeted effort. The Sophie Wittams Twitter account followed almost 100 MPs as part of the cover story – not to target them – which is obvious given that many of them were women MPs and the list included the Prime Minister. There was no intention to trap the PM.

If IPSO finds against the Daily Mirror it won’t prove it has teeth, it will prove as we told the Leveson Inquiry, that “media standards” are really a form of censorship that will protect the powerful from having their wrongdoings uncovered. This blog will never bow to the censors – we will continue to use subterfuge and clandestine methods to go after wrong ‘uns – there is no other way.

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 married into the multi-millionairess Margaret Hodge’s family dynasty. Still, nice little earner…

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 the Mail on Sunday, Mirror and ITV. Following his not guilty verdict, Evans gave emotional interviews to the MoS, Sunday Mirror and ITV’s Daybreak. He says he spent three hours with each outlet, so it wasn’t a bad way of helping towards paying his £130,000 legal bills. If he’d been found guilty he would have got a column in the Guardian…

Twitter Bitch Fight of the Week: Morgan v Maguire

Two Mirror men past and present have come to blows in this week’s Twitter bitch fight.

Piers Morgan did not take kindly to Kevin Maguire’s diary story about him going to visit Andy Coulson in the clink. The Mirror associate editor cattily enquired as to why Piers didn’t tweet about the trip.

One problem, he did:

Cue Piers deciding to give Maguire a slap:

He should have quit while he was ahead:

Knockout…

Mirror Terror

Mirror, Monday: “EBOLA TERROR AS PASSENGER DIES AT GATWICK”.

No Ebola.

Mirror, Wednesday, “BOMB TERROR AT 38,000 FT”.

No bomb.[…]

+ READ MORE +

Mirror Readies Pennies for Hacking Payouts

piersknew480

Buried in the small print of the Mirror’s Half-Yearly Financial Report (out today) is this little note:

Historical Legal Issues
dailymirrorThe Group continues to co-operate with the police in respect of Operation Elvedon (the investigation relating to alleged inappropriate payments

[…]

+ READ MORE +

Sunday Mirror and People to Merge

[…]

+ READ MORE +

Piers Tears: Another Fake Mirror Front Page

Under the headline “Britain, 2014.” the Mirror’s front page is really going for emotional shock factor today:

The only problem is that the picture is not “Britain, 2014″, it is “America, 2009″ and Anne is crying over an earthworm. […]

+ READ MORE +



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