Hacked off - a rather more complex set-up than one might suppose

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by FORMER_FYRDMAN, Mar 31, 2013.

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    FORMER_FYRDMAN LE Book Reviewer

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  2. And this surprises anyone?
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  3. Non story: a lot of people (who it kindly lists) are on the fringes of Hacked Off, suggesting that a balanced and rigorous debate of varied opinions is likely.

    So what's this article really saying? That Telegraph readers can't handle complexity. Ah, ok. I knew that.
  4. Right-wing media believes criticism of media a left-wing plot. Quel suprise.

    With the exception of Margaret Thatcher's 1979 election win, is there anything the Telegraph doesn't believe a left-wing plot?
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  5. Auld-Yin

    Auld-Yin LE Reviewer Book Reviewer Reviews Editor

    So, a newspaper attacking a group that is asking for more responsible journalism - I wonder if they will give equal coverage to Hacked Off in reply. Somehow I doubt it.

    FORMER_FYRDMAN LE Book Reviewer

    So, in your view, if you're a Director of an organisation, you're only on its fringes?
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    FORMER_FYRDMAN LE Book Reviewer

    Except they weren't all asking for more responsible journalism, one senior figure is on record as saying:

    Writing on the “New Left Project” website, Fenton attacked the “excessively liberalised press” and the “naive pluralism” of “assuming that the more news we have, the more democratic our societies are”.

    That implies that someone should prescribe 'how much news we have' - which is essentially censorship, and the use of the phrase 'naive pluralism' suggests that a multiplicity of views is not a desired end-state. Personally I don't care what people read but I have issues with lobby groups looking to define what's acceptable and actively organising to promote this view. No doubt Victorian Major has his own reasons for describing the campaign director of Hacked Off as peripheral to the campaign but I am concerned when pluralism is described as naive and people with a clear agenda attempt to restrict it by law.

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    FORMER_FYRDMAN LE Book Reviewer

    Or alternatively: "Right wing newspaper produces a referenced article containing some facts for discussion which Arrse's man in the East is content to dismiss in a fashion which he would call anyone else on if they attempted the same thing on him." :)
  9. Well, the way I read it was that 'naive pluralism' referred to the assumption that all we needed for democracy to flourish was lots and lots of newspapers accountable only to themselves for what they publish. I think the available evidence shows that's not the case.

    For the record, I'm not in favour of restricting the press by fiat. I am, however, in favour of making individuals and their employers jointly accountable for the accuracy of what they publish - criminally liable where failure to be so materially harms the target. Since they've shown themselves so overwhelmingly to be incapable of separating bias from reportage and ego from accuracy, they need to be reminded from time to time what their responsibility is.
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    FORMER_FYRDMAN LE Book Reviewer

    But the criminal liability already exists and the issue with the hacking scandal was that the existing laws weren't applied because of the media handling strategy of the government of the day. Once Labour was out of the way, the investigations got a new lease of life, prosecutions started and are on-going, people have gone to prison, the latest only last week, and one of the offending newspapers has been closed down. Further, the whole issue was kept alive by the Guardian, a clear demonstration of the value of a pluralist media.

    Any notion of 'public good' should emerge and evolve through free and pluralist discussion and not because someone somewhere has defined it to their personal satisfaction.
  11. Has the criminal liability stopped our press abusing their powers at all? They did it before and during the phone hacking scandal in more ways than just that one. What we should be doing is ensuring that those who would hold a power are genuinely accountable for their use of it and that they are effectively punished for abusing it. That is after all the justification for a free press in the first place, that those in power need to be checked. Who does it for the press? Currently, themselves and they've proven damned laggardly at it.
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    FORMER_FYRDMAN LE Book Reviewer

    Despite the focus on Cameron and horses, I believe the witch hunt would be better directed towards Blair and god children. Ultimately any system is only as good as the will to enforce it and I don't believe that we control scum with vested interests by empowering other scum with vested interests. We need an explanation as to why existing laws were not applied before we start drafting new laws.
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  13. Give them time.
  14. Well said that Man!