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July 20 2011

20:06

UK - David Cameron widens inquiry on media regulation to include the BBC and social media

Guardian :: Prime Minister David Cameron wants takeover rulings taken out of politicians' hands and Ofcom given power to act at earlier stage. Furthermore he has broadened the terms of the inquiry into the conduct of the media to include social media. PM Cameron was setting out the formal terms of reference of the inquiry to be led by Lord Justice Leveson, an appeal court judge. The inquiry has become something of a behemoth, leading Don Foster, the Liberal Democrat media spokesman, to assert he could not see how it could be completed within its timetable of a year.

Continue to read Patrick Wintour, www.guardian.co.uk

June 02 2011

08:43

Japan - Prime Minister Naoto Kan survives no-confidence vote

Bloomberg :: Japan’s Prime Minister Naoto Kan survived a no-confidence vote after appealing to ruling party dissidents by offering to resign once the country’s worst crisis since World War II is under control. The Diet’s lower house voted 293-152 against the motion, as opposition lawmakers failed to attract enough support from Kan’s Democratic Party of Japan.

Continue to read Sachiko Sakamaki | Takashi Hirokawa, www.bloomberg.com

November 11 2009

14:13

Sun misjudges readers’ mood over Gordon Brown letter

The Sun is running a despicable campaign against Gordon Brown. But I’ve analysed the comments on its website – and readers disagree with its stance by a ratio of more than 3 to 2 (on top of which, there are now accusations that the Sun is censoring pro-Brown comments).

The paper has exploited the grief of Jacqui Janes over her son Jamie’s death in Afghanistan to attack the PM – because his handwritten letter of condolence was supposedly disrespectful due to sloppy writing and (disputed) spelling errors.

It’s loathsome journalism that ignores the effect of his disability (the PM is blind in one eye).

And it seems Sun readers are mostly on the Prime Minister’s side.

Of the 100+ comments on the story (don’t worry, I’ve nofollowed those links) when I checked, 111 expressed a view for or against Jacqui Janes or Gordon Brown (the rest commented on other issues or corrected people’s spelling errors). Of these:

  • 42 were anti Gordon or pro the Sun’s stance.
  • 69 were pro Gordon or anti the Sun’s stance.

So that’s more than 60% who don’t agree with the Sun, and less than 40% who do.

Sample comments from those who agree with the Sun’s stanceanti-gordon-brown

Some comments from those opposing itpro-gordon-brown

Conclusion

The Sun is channeling this woman’s grief into a personal attack on the Prime Minister.

It’s refusing to make allowances for his disability (maybe we could next attack the war wounded for being workshy benefit scroungers?).

And it’s facilitating her breaking data protection laws by releasing a recording of a private phone call.

The whole thing is sickening – let’s hope that observing its readers’ reactions will lead to an end to this (not that this happened in the Jan Moir case) – and preferably prosecution of the Sun over the data protection offence. What’s more, Daily Mail readers are pro Brown, too. The Sun has got this badly wrong.

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