a diverse news media is priority – richard sambrook
How should we reinterpret journalism and free speech for the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta?
In the UK we seem still to be confused after the phone hacking trial and Leveson report on how to balance the independence and accountability of the press. Any thoughts of a UK version of America’s ‘first amendment’ guaranteeing freedom of the press – as offered by the Leveson report – have been swept aside with the industry’s objections to his proposals. On the other hand, the new government’s plans for a so-called Snoopers Charter, and their apparent hostility to the European Convention on Human Rights – the closest we have to a guarantee of press freedom – bodes ill for the kind of awkward independent journalism that matters most. But perhaps it is the global issues of net neutrality, the use and misuse of personal data and widespread impunity around the world for those who kill journalists that should matter more. In spite of the crimes of a few, the UK enjoys a strong, boisterous, diverse news media. We shouldn’t take it for granted.