Wednesday, June 6, 2012

End of Piers’ Show

When Piers Morgan began his gig at CNN he told us: “judge me after a year”. Well time is up and the viewers have spoken, with ratings for his beleaguered talk show plummeting by over 50% after twelve months. Over the last month Piers averaged just 395,000 viewers, even hitting an axe-worthy all-time low of 39,000 in the crucial 25-54 age group. His Jubilee coverage this weekend may have given him an undeserved upward ratings blip. It was so cringe-making it was the butt of jokes from Jon Stewart. 

And it isn’t just viewing figures that are cause for concern for Morgan and his bosses. With Jeremy Paxman royally landing him in it at Leveson last month it is expected that Piers will be recalled for a second chat with Brian and Mr Jay. This time he won’t get away with plugging his book via video-link.

A year ago Piers would never have thought he’d be fighting for his job on two fronts. Guido wonders whether it will be ratings or phone-hacking that forces CNN’s hand. Let’s judge it in a year’s time…

Friday, May 25, 2012

Nick Davies: “Fluke” Mirror Not in Dock

Last night Guido found himself at the Media Society’s awards ceremony where the luvvies of the metropolitan elite had gathered to spend the night congratulating themselves. The evening was dedicated to the hyperbolic glorification of the Guardian’s pursuit of the hacking story and the work by their investigative journalist Nick Davies.

Steve Coogan was the compere, telling some fantastically foul-mouthed jokes about Paul Dacre, Louise Mensch and James Murdoch. Tom Watson took to the podium to trowel on the praise thickly with a flowery speech about the heroism of Guardianistas. Sir Harry Evans hammed it up on stage and continued his decades-long feud with Murdoch, calling  Rupert a liar at Leveson. It went so over-the-top it was over the horizon when the Media Society’s president, American-born Geraldine Sharpe Newton, compared the hacking saga to Watergate, casting Nick Davies and the Guardian’s editor Alan Rusbridger in the famous leading roles. There was a lot of talk about the “fear of taking on Murdoch”, it seems clear to Guido that far from being fearful the Guardian has enjoyed itself immensely pursuing Murdoch.

As if all that that was not enough to digest, before dessert we got Henry Porter going over the same rhetorical ground as previous speakers until he named Stephen Glover, William Shawcross, Toby Young and Boris Johnson on a roll call of “shameful” Murdoch media cheerleaders in comparison to the moral giant that is his editor. Rusbridger himself gave a dignified acceptance speech, which depending on your taste was either too knowingly smug or, as Tom Watson claimed, fine since he had “earned the right to smugness”. Rusbridger did at one point self-deprecatingly suggest he would perhaps be better cast as an older Harry Potter rather than in a British movie version of Watergate.

It was all getting a bit too much for Guido to bear when Nick Davies came on, he was amusing and authentic with a more down-to-earth style acceptance speech. Then Nick changed gear and said that the Mirror and the Mail were as culpable in their criminality as News International, that it was a “fluke” that the Mirror was not in the dock too. Later in the Corinthia bar, speaking over a brandy, one of the lawyers at the heart of the hacking saga said that Davies was wrong about the Mirror not being in the dock. Forthcoming legal cases will put the Mirror squarely in the dock – it seems it is true that one day you’re the cock of the walk, the next a feather duster

Friday, February 17, 2012

Early Bath for Piers

Guido does not imagine Piers will be suing… 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Heather Mills Drops Piers and Mirror Right In It


Not a good week for Mirror Group newspapers. Yesterday Guido repeated to Leveson exactly what he has blogged previously, the editor of the Sunday Mirror, Tina Weaver, authorised phone-hacking and blagging according to two journalist sources. Today Heather Mills told Leveson that Piers Morgan could only have listened to her voicemails as a result of illegality.

The BBC’s Newsnight has heard the same stories and probably from the same sources:

When Guido met Lord Hunt he brought up the subject of Weaver sitting on the Press Complaints Commission, he looked uncomfortable and squirmed without giving an answer. Guido told him to get his own house in order. It is a sick joke that Tina Weaver still sits as a member of the Commission.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Heather Mills Accuses Piers Morgan of Scapegoating


Heather Mills has released this statement on her website:

For the avoidance of doubt, I can categorically state that I have never ever played Piers Morgan a tape of any kind, never mind a voice message from my ex husband.

Piers Morgan is doing all he can to deter the Leveson enquiry from finishing their important job.

Morgan is using me as his scapegoat and I would be more than happy to answer any questions that the inquiry would like to put to me.

As stated in a press release by my ex-husband, he has never insinuated that I have leaked tapes of him to the media.

Oh dear Piers…

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Poll: 96% Don’t Believe Morgan Told the Truth

A real time poll conducted for this website during Piers Morgan’s witness interview in front of Lord Justice Leveson  found 96% didn’t believe him, 3% did and 1% didn’t know. Piers squirmed and squirmed throughout. Crucially he refused to explain how he came to be listening to the voicemails of Paul McCartney to his wife, citing source protection. Guido suspects that if Heather Mills or Sir Paul wanted to, they could make life very difficult for Morgan. There is no public interest defence for hacking celebs.

He claimed that it was not unethical to listen to the tapes and insisted “I am not going to discuss where I heard it or who played it to me”, on the grounds that “I am not going to do anything that may identify the source.”

Morgan finished his evidence with the  “Je suis un rock star” claim that he was like a rock star having the worst songs picked from his back catalogue. Some front…

Piers Morgan LiveChat

Piers Morgan’s Most Difficult Interview Yet

Piers Morgan has been less than his usual fluent self since Louise Mensch messed up accusations against him. He is appearing via television link at the Leveson Inquiry this afternoon. His famous retort to Louise Mensch MP was

“I have never hacked a phone, told anyone to hack a phone, or published any stories based on the hacking of a phone.”

The evidence shows he is lying. During his editorship of the Daily Mirror plenty of stories were published that were based on information obtained from phone hacking. Not only was his paper under his editorship hacking, it was illegally blagging private data on an industrial scale. The police led “Operation Motorman” investigation reveals that the Mirror Group paid private investigators some £442,878.73 to illegally procure personal data like tax records, DVLA records, medical and phone records. Invoice by invoice analysis by Guido traces sixty five invoices for potentially criminal transactions back directly to Piers Morgan’s Daily Mirror during his time as editor. A time when he told the DCMS he should be “congratulated” for cleaning up the paper and operating the Press Complaints Commission’s Code of Practice “effectively and seriously”.

Back in August we wrote to the Leveson Inquiry putting the case for Piers Morgan to be questioned and suggested some questions on the charge sheet:

Since that time he has refused to comment on the issue, British law does not allow a witness, even one in America, to “take the fifth”, he will almost certainly try to avoid self-incrimination by evasion. This could be Piers Morgan’s most difficult interview yet…

Friday, December 16, 2011

Leveson Confirms Piers Morgan Will Get Preferential Treatment

Leveson has confirmed that Morgan will be appearing on Tuesday. Via video link…

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Breaking: Morgan Nemesis James Hipwell to Testify Wednesday

The former Mirror journalist whose testimony will painful to watch for Piers Morgan will be before Leveson on Wednesday morning. The day after Morgan.

In July Hipwell spoke out of his time at Morgan’s Mirror:

“I used to see it going on around me all the time when I worked at the Daily Mirror. I sat right next to the show business desk and there were some show biz reporters who did it as a matter of course, as a basic part of their working day. One of their bosses would wander up and instruct a reporter to `trawl the usual suspects’, which meant going through the voice messages of celebrities and celebrity PR agents. For everyone to pretend that this is some isolated activity found only at the News of the World is ridiculous, it’s just a lie.”

Said Showbiz Editor was one Mr. Richard Wallace who is also expected to give evidence this week. He is now the Mirror’s editor…

See also: Ex-Mirror Journalist Puts Morgan’s Denial in Doubt and Mirror Journo Speaks Out Against Morgan’s Version of Events

UPDATE: Sky’s digital-guru Neal Mann scooped Guido by about eight seconds. He’s pretty grumpy about this.


Seen Elsewhere

UKIP Will Make Miliband PM | Tele
Tories: Ruffley Critics are ‘Minority Feminist Groups’ | Buzzfeed
Harriet Harman Offers Less Than the Living Wage | Owen Bennett
Fallon’s Red Arrow Spin Unravels | Wings Over Scotland
What is the LibDems’ Problem With “The Jews” | Speccie
Image is the Least of Ed’s Worries | Speccie
The Most Politically Cynical Speech I Have Ever Seen | Dan Hodges
Full Sunday Sport Style Guide Email | MediaGuido
What if a Hamas Rocket Hit a BA Plane? | Richard Littlejohn
Sunday Sport Swearing Style Guide | Popbitch
Tory MP’s Love of Astrology | BBC


new-advert
Westbourne-Change-Opinion Guido-hot-button (1)


New Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond has big ambitions in his first meeting with Benjamin Netanyahu today:

“I came to bring this conflict to an end.”



Christie Malry @fcablog

Ed Miliband does photo oops, not photo ops


Tip off Guido
Web Guido's Archives

Subscribe me to:






RSS


AddThis Feed Button
Archive


Labels
Guido Reads