Guardian

Jun 30, 2014

Media briefs: Sun shines … paywall blues … Press Council ruling …

The Age is in a bit of hot water with the Press Council over the precise definition of the word "said". Plus other media tidbits of the day.

Brooks is no Greste. Peter Greste is beginning a seven-year prison sentence in Egypt on trumped-up charges, a victim of political manoeuvering and his employer's carelessness -- so in the Oz's media section Mark Day says spare a thought for ... Rebekah Brooks. Yeah, that's right. Comparing Greste's fate to Brooks', Day notes:
"It is tempting to think that Brooks ... got off scot-free when she was acquitted ... free is hardly the word ... she lost her job, her reputation and her future employment prospects ... the British justice system moves at glacial speed ... by what logic do riot squads need to conduct 4am raids ... the hacking and bribery charges are part of a wider attempt by the British establishment to rein in the media ..."
Ok, let's unpack this. The "glacial speed" of British justice is called "due process", which permitted each defendant in the hackgate trial to have his or her own legal team, and challenge the admissibility of prosecution evidence -- music videos didn't form a big part of the hackgate trial. The 4am raids are standard practice to prevent disposal of evidence -- something the Murdoch tabloid press has supported forever, even going on ride-alongs. Brooks is notorious for publishing the addresses of alleged sex offenders, leading to violent assaults. Her prospects are ruined? Please. There'll be the blockbuster book, and a new sinecure at Anti-News Corp. As to an attack on media -- it's the mass illegality of Anti-News that has made self-regulation impossible. Anti-News' narcissistic self-pity is usually amusing. Here, it's disgusting. Even mentioning Greste and Brooks in the same article is a pathetic example of how they just don't get it. -- Guy Rundle The Sun'll come out tomorrow. Speaking of phone hacking, it seems The Sun is back in the Murdoch good books, now the initial verdicts have been handed down and Brooks recreated as an innocent freedom fighter. Rupert Murdoch's Murdochhere Tumblr (a Crikey favourite) shows the octogenarian media titan engrossed in editorial discussions at the red-top ...

Press Council ruling. "Never let the facts get in the way of a good story", the saying goes, but the Press Council disagrees. In a comment piece in The Age, John Legge wrote:
"Abbott, when asked about the Holden workers who will lose their jobs, said they should be grateful they were being liberated from slaving on the assembly line, moving to living off Newstart and Work for the Dole."
Except that is not what Abbott, in fact, said -- he made no reference to Newstart or Work for the Dole, and he did not use the word "grateful". Fairfax's Melbourne tabloid, sorry, compact, argued that in an opinion piece the word "said" does not mean "said" the same way it would in a news story. The Press Council wasn't having a bar of it, in this ruling run in The Age on page 12 today:
"The council considers that, in general, when an article states that a person has 'said' something, the description of what he said must either be an accurate quote or a reasonably accurate paraphrase. It is an unacceptable representation, for example, to state that a person 'said' something which, in fact, is merely what the author regards as the consequences of what the person said or as what the person actually thinks although he did not say it."
Hold off on ABC app updates.  If you use ABC apps on your iPhone or iPad, make sure to turn off automatic app updates in your device's settings. The ABC's mobile division sent the following tweet this morning, after some dodgy code was accidentally pushed through to the Apple Store:

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3 comments

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3 thoughts on “Media briefs: Sun shines … paywall blues … Press Council ruling …

  1. klewso

    The only similarity between Greste and “Our Miss Brooks” was the inappropriateness of the outcome – one was found guilty and the other found not?
    [Next time there’s a News Corpse knees-up to see where share-holder funds have been interred with that body, I’d like to see a Kiwi get up and ask “Whose idea was it to devote all those share-holder funds to someone as thoock as a Brook?”]

  2. Sailor

    Unfortunately, Miguel Herrera’s spray at the Netherlands coach has “FIFA’s copyright” so is blocked from view.

    Pity Todd Carney’s spray – or better still, anything about him – hasn’t been blocked as well.

  3. Sailor

    Klewso, it goes without saying I agree with you after all that’s been disclosed about the shameless criminality that went (maybe ‘goes’?) on. But the pathetic bleats of confected pain from the Mudroc acolytes will go on consuming trees & petabytes without embarrassment or truth, I can predict that.

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