Jon Slattery

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A freelance journalist writing from the UK.
Updated: 1 hour 37 min ago

Media Quotes of the Week: From MP blasts Newsquest for absence of any form of duty of care to staff to those punishing Bake Off headlines

22 September 2016 - 8:42am

Bromley & Chislehurst MP Bob Neil in a letter to Newsquest CEO Henry Faure Walker over redundancies at the company's South London titles: "I know very well the need for efficiencies and savings, but the cyclical, unrelenting manner in which Newsquest seeks too make these changes - most recently with  the announcement that professional photographers will no longer be used - shows a complete absence of any form of duty of care to its staff, and perhaps more damaging from a reputational perspective, a flagrant disregard to the readers it reports to."

Iliffe Media chairman Edward Iliffe to HoldTheFrontPage on launching a new weekly, the Cambridge Independent“The structural changes and challenges for the traditional newspaper industry are well documented. But we strongly believe there is a demand for quality journalism, useful information and entertaining content published across multiple formats to local communities,”

The Washington Post in a leader on Edward Snowden, some of whose leaked security surveillance information was published by the paper: "EDWARD SNOWDEN, the former National Security Agency contractor who blew the cover off the federal government’s electronic surveillance programs three years ago, has his admirers. After the inevitably celebratory Oliver Stone film about him appears this weekend, he may have more. Whether Mr. Snowden deserves a presidential pardon, as human rights organizations are demanding in a new national campaign timed to coincide with the film, is a complicated question, however, to which President Obama’s answer should continue to be 'no'.”

Donald J. Trump [email protected] on Twitter: "My lawyers want to sue the failing @nytimes so badly for irresponsible intent. I said no (for now), but they are watching. Really disgusting."

David Yelland [email protected] on Twitter: "The US media has an historic duty to question Trump but is weak and oddly deferential to his celebrity status. The networks are worst."

Jeremy Corbyn asked in a Guardian interview what he would have done differently in his first year as Labour leader: “I would be better prepared for the media onslaught. I knew it was going to be difficult. But even I was surprised at the levels of refusal to engage, or to try to understand what we’re trying to achieve.”

The Wall Street Journal in a leader on Les Hinton, former CEO of the paper's parent company Dow Jones, being cleared of misleading Parliament over phone hacking at the News of the World:"The phone hacking practices that led to News of the World’s abrupt closure were 'deplorable.' But those practices were used as a pretext by our competitors in the press and the usual political suspects to malign and try to bring down an entire news organization. Another principal media target of the scandal, News International CEO Rebekah Brooks, was acquitted of all charges against her in a 2014 criminal trial. As for Mr. Hinton, his parliamentary vindication is, as he says, 'too little and too late,' but it should be a warning of the damage that political frenzies can do to the lives and careers of honorable men."

Bob Satchwell, executive director of the Society of Editors, in the wake of a decision by Liverpool City Council, led by Mayor Joe Anderson, to unanimously vote to support the 'Total Eclipse of The S*n' campaign which has called on newsgagents to refuse to stock and sell the Sun over its coverage of the 1989 Hillsborough disaster: "In a free society people must be free to choose which newspapers they read or sell. The comments from Joe Anderson demonstrate the danger when he says that if he had his way he would ban The Sun. That is what happens in dictatorships and banana republics."

The Sunday Times [£] under the headline 'You’d batter believe it' : "Guess which item of news these headlines from last week were reporting: Crumbs! This takes biscuit (Sun); Bun Fight (Mirror); Desserted (Sun); and — just for a change — Crumbs! (Mail). Has any TV programme in history done more than The Great British Bake Off to preserve the art of the terrible newspaper pun?"


Media Quotes of the Week: How print still beats the web to now nasty Rob Titchener abuses hacks

16 September 2016 - 8:41am

Jack Shafer on Politico"Print—particularly the newspaper—is an amazingly sophisticated technology for showing you what’s important, and showing you a lot of it. The newspaper has refined its user interface for more than two centuries. Incorporated into your daily newspaper's architecture are the findings from field research conducted in thousands of newspapers over hundreds of millions of editions. Newspaper designers have created a universal grammar of headline size, typeface, place, letter spacing, white space, sections, photography, and illustration that gives readers subtle clues on what and how to read to satisfy their news needs. Web pages can't convey this metadata because there's not enough room on the screen to display it all."

Allison Pearson in the Telegraph: "It is scarcely credible at the start of the 21st century that the number of national newspaper columnists who went to Westminster, Eton or other private schools outnumber those of us who went to a comprehensive. How is it possible that the kind of school that serves 93 per cent of the population should be so pitifully under-represented among the ranks of those who pontificate on state education about which, to be perfectly fair, they know absolutely bugger all?"

Harold Evans‏ @sirharryevans on Twitter: "For sheer disgusting hyena journalism see -or rather don't- NY Post splash on Clinton sickness."

Donald Trump at a rally in New Hampshire, as reported by the Huffington Post: “I have really good news for you. I just heard that the press is stuck on their airplane. They can’t get here. I love it...They called us and said, ‘Could you wait? I said, ‘Absolutely not.’ Let’s get going, right? Let’s get going, New Hampshire.”

Trinity Mirror in a statement: "Trinity Mirror has confirmed that it will be handing back four of the eight regional Metro franchises it operates to DMGT. The Scotland, Cardiff, Bristol, and East Midlands Metro franchises will be handed back with effect from 1st January 2017 but (it is understood) are likely to be continued to be published by DMGT. Trinity Mirror will continue to operate its other Metro franchises in Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle and Birmingham. Trinity Mirror has run the regional Metro franchises since each was launched over the last 15 years. However, as circulation and advertising revenue has declined, the profitability and sustainability of each franchise for the company has been reviewed."

Metro in a statement: "From 1 October 2016, Metro is set to increase its national print circulation by 10%, increasing the paper's daily print run to 1.477 million – its largest ever. Most extra copies of the newspaper will be distributed in the London area, upping the number available each weekday morning to almost 900,000 in the capital. Metro will be expanding the edition's existing presence on the bus network, with the paper available to even more commuters in London and the South East."

David Walsh in the Sunday Times [£]: "It has always been clear that those with most to hide are often quickest to sue. Putting it bluntly, they use their lawyers to discourage inquiry. This response is now exacerbated by changes in the way we receive our news and the difficulties that have arisen from our industry’s original sin: free content. [David] Simon’s point is undeniable. Proper journalism depends upon an online revenue stream. The irony is that journalism has never been as vital to a country’s overall health as it is now. A current example: there is a sporting body out there, funded by you and I, the taxpayer, who seem almost eager to pass on every difficult question to their lawyers. They employ PR staff but you wouldn’t know this if you emailed a serious question. Instead the lawyers write long letters for large fees. What lawyers love, though, is further correspondence. Most newspapers cannot afford to engage in lengthy legal actions and, of course, this is something the unscrupulous exploit."

Jeff Jarvis in an open letter to Mark Zuckerberg after Facebook took down the famous Vietnam war picture of a girl victim of napalm: "Dear Mark Zuckerberg, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Facebook needs an editor — to stop Facebook from editing. It needs someone to save Facebook from itself by bringing principles to the discussion of rules. There is actually nothing new in this latest episode: Facebook sends another takedown notice over a picture with nudity. What is new is that Facebook wants to take down an iconic photo of great journalistic meaning and historic importance and that Facebook did this to a leading editor, Espen Egil Hansen, editor-in-chief of Aftenposten, who answered forcefully: 'The media have a responsibility to consider publication in every single case. This may be a heavy responsibility. Each editor must weigh the pros and cons. This right and duty, which all editors in the world have, should not be undermined by algorithms encoded in your office in California…. Editors cannot live with you, Mark, as a master editor'."
Peter Preston in The Observer: "Facebook, though now the biggest carrier of digital news on Planet Earth, says it isn’t an editor or publisher, merely a humble platform. But now watch it change algorithms like any publisher in a jam. Watch it take editorial decisions, switching idiocy for sense. And watch it drain advertising revenue pretty voraciously from the news sites it carries. Dear Mark is part of our news world now. And he needs to be fully, intelligently engaged in it."

Dylan Jones in The New European: "Van Morrison tends to think that most journalists are dumber than cardboard. As one said, he takes to interviews like a duck to tarmac."

Daily Mail@DailyMailUK on Twitter: "Police create crime map that looks like a giant pink penis"

Ben Fenton [email protected] on Twitter: "Slow news day?"

Daily Mail U.K. [email protected] on Twitter @benfenton"yes".

Rob Titchener in The Archers reviews the papers: "Here's another one. 'Serial Abuser Posed as Mr. Nice Guy'. My life reduced to a salacious headline. How can they live with themselves inventing this nonsense. These hacks have no idea."