The 2015 UK General Election will be “the best chance we have ever had to produce a manifesto that has some body of support behind it,” the CPBF’s Granville Williams told the launch meeting of the Media Manifesto in London on December 1. “This is about putting media reform back on the political agenda”.
Granville Williams, a veteran campaigner for media reform, said the CPBF had produced Media Manifestos since 1986. “We used to put them out just for the sake of showing what we would like to see in an ideal world because we were frozen out by New Labour. But all that changed in July 2010 when Murdoch decided to get the Tories to help him grab BSkyB. We had a successful campaign against it and that’s part of what we want to create in the run-up to the election.”
It is over six months since Telefonica tabled its bid to buy 56 per cent of Spain’s pay TV operator Canal+ from the Prisa Group on top of the 22 per cent it already owned and at last it is facing the competition probe we predicted it would at the time. The other 22 per cent owned by Mediaset, the Italian commercial broadcaster, has meanwhile been swallowed up by Telefonica as well, so successful acquisition of Prisa’s share for €750m would give it total ownership.
The Home Affairs Select Committee has told police forces to stop secretly monitoring the phone records of journalists. The Commons committee has published a report in the wake of the news that the Met Police spied on the phone records of the Sun to find the Plebgate whistleblowers.
Steven Greenhouse (pictured left), one of the last labor correspondents working for US newspapers, is leaving the New York Times after 31 years on the papers. ‘This has been one of the toughest decisions of my life,’ he writes.
I got the news just as I was watching an episode of Season Five of 'The Wire' — it’s the series which deals with the impact on the Baltimore Sun as the top management impose swathes of cuts across the newspaper with the inevitable loss of skills, contacts and local knowledge from specialist reporters.