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Peter Kirwan on newspaper editors and where they live

June 10th, 2009 | No Comments | Posted by in Editors' pick, Journalism

An apt subject, given newspaper editors’ current preoccupation with where and how our MPs are living in London. Press Gazette’s Peter Kirwan notes that he is increasingly convinced that a national newspaper editor has moved into his street, in an ‘untidy’ corner of the city.

Kirwan takes a look at other journalists’ choice of location:

“When he edited the Sunday Times, Andrew Neil lived in snooty Onslow Gardens off the Fulham Road. Today, Simon Kelner of the Independent scrapes by in Belgravia. As everyone knows, Polly Toynbee occupies a small castle next to Clapham Common (when she’s not living in Italy).

“Not so The Editor.”

‘Most of the editorial executives who run the nationals could do with a blast of Real Life,’ Kirwan comments; he reckons his street might give ‘The Editor’ just that.

Full story at this link…

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BBC Two Daily Politics – Greenslade and Meyer on regulation

April 2nd, 2009 | 3 Comments | Posted by in Broadcasting, Journalism, Legal

In the latest public debate surrounding regulation of the UK press, Sir Christopher Meyer, former chairman of the UK Press Complaints Commission (PCC), today argued that the current self-regulatory system was ‘robust, quick and satisfying.’

Meyer, who has now been replaced as PCC chair by Peta Buscombe, was a guest on today’s Daily Politics show on BBC Two, and said that the process worked for many reasons – the body’s discreet handling of complaints was just one, he said.

Meyer defended the PCC’s role, using the fact that they received a record number of complaints from newspaper readers last year as evidence that the principle of self-regulation was firmly established in the industry.

He added that the number of complaints to the PCC had doubled during his tenure.

During the debate, however, Roy Greenslade, professor of journalism at City University in London, said that the body was not advertised widely enough. He said: “Most of the public aren’t aware of the PCC, and the newspapers certainly don’t publicise it.”

The show’s presenter, Andrew Neil, asked Meyer where the PCC was during the disappearance of Madeleine McCann. Neil also asked why the body didn’t do more to protect Kate and Gerry McCann from the accusations made by newspapers.

Meyer said that Gerry McCann felt that the publicity and coverage of his daughter’s disappearance would aid the search for his daughter. “We told them we were there for them if they wanted help, but they were too busy,” Meyer said.

He added that the McCanns were focused on finding Madeleine at the time.

Greenslade argued that a PCC statement should have been issued at the time, warning the newspapers to adhere to the PCC code of practice.

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Royal Television Society journalism award winners in full

February 27th, 2009 | 2 Comments | Posted by in Broadcasting, Events

As Tony Burman predicted, the ‘news channel of the year’ award at last night’s Royal Television Society awards didn’t go to Al Jazeera. Instead, it went to the BBC – who did rather well on the night in several categories. Here’s the full list, with the judges’ comments:

Young Journalist of the year: Hannah Thomas-Peter – Sky News
“A combination of fantastic access and great insight has enabled our winner to help transform health coverage on Sky News.”
Nominees: Joe Crowley – Inside Out BBC South / Kate Taunton – Channel 4 News ITN for Channel 4 News

Nations and Regions Current Affairs: The Story of Michael Barnett – Inside Out BBC Yorkshire
“A powerful programme with a sure touch…with the confidence to let the story tell itself.”
Nominees: A Friend in Need – Focus ITV Meridian / Meat Hygiene – Week In Week Out Special BBC Wales

Nations and Regions News Coverage: Weston Pier Fire – The West Tonight ITV West for ITV1
“… comprehensive, engaging and professionally presented.  It had outstanding pictures and a real sense of an event which affected the whole community.”
Nominees: Boris’s Deputy – Ray Lewis Investigation BBC London News / The Darwin Trial North East Tonight for ITV1

Scoop of the Year: HBOS/Lloyds TSB Merger BBC News Channel
“… indeed ‘an extraordinary exclusive’ which heralded the extraordinary changes in the British banking system.”
Nominees: China – The Moment the Earth Shook ITV News / Canoe Man – Gerard Tubb Sky News

Presenter of the Year: Jon Snow – Channel 4 News ITN for Channel 4 News
“…yet another superb year, whether it was in the studio – interrogating politicians and bankers – or out in the field – from the Middle East to the United States. One jury member said ‘he’s just brilliant. There’s nothing more to say.'”
Nominees: Kay Burley – Sky News Sky News / Andrew Neil – BBC News

News Coverage – Home: The British Banking Crisis BBC News
“The winning entry started with a scoop of the first order and followed it with reportage and explanation of the highest quality. It was without doubt the story of the year and showed BBC News at its very best.”
Nominees: Ipswich – Guilty ITV News / Heathrow Crash BBC News

News Coverage – International:
Congo Crisis ITN for Channel 4 News
“Top class coverage of a consistently high standard… It was totally comprehensive, enterprising and managed brilliantly to use small individual stories to explain the bigger picture.”
Nominees: China – The Earthquake ITV News / Conflict in the Caucasus – Newsnight BBC Newsnight for BBC Two

News Channel of the Year: BBC News Channel
“The winning news channeldelivered a fantastic series of scoops on the story of the year. It was a channel you had to watch to keep abreast of the breaking economic news.”
Nominees: Al Jazeera English News Al Jazeera English News / Sky News Sky News

Current Affairs – Home: Primark: On the Rack – Panorama BBC for BBC One
“… not only an engaging watch but… thorough and also went the extra mile to lay bare the whole chain from refugee camp to the High Street rail.”
Nominees: Omagh: What The Police Were Never Told – Panorama BBC for BBC One / The Secret Peacemaker BBC for BBC Two

Current Affairs – International: Undercover in Tibet – Dispatches True Vision for Channel 4 Television
“…a truly great current affairs film that sheds light on the future. Filmed just months before Tibet erupted into rioting, this extraordinarily brave programme, made at great personal risk and with much hardship, illuminated the tensions and troubles of the country, with powerful testimony and pictures.”
Nominees: Britain’s Most Wanted – This World Mentorn Media for BBC for BBC Two / Iraq’s Lost Generation – Dispatches Hardcash for Channel 4 Television

Innovative News
: 10 Days to War – Newsnight BBC Newsnight for BBC Two
“The winning series harnessed everything from drama documentary to a special website to re-examine events leading to the Iraq war in 2003. The jury saw this as a brave and successful venture to capture a new and younger audience.”
Nominees: Unplugged Sky News / On The Frontline – Afghan Headcams ITV News

Specialist Journalist of the Year: Robert Peston – BBC News
“One journalist dominated this year’s specialist category.  [He] owned the story of the Credit Crunch and its impact on the whole economy.”
Nominees: Faisal Islam – Channel 4 News/ Channel 4 News at Noon ITN for Channel 4 News / Jason Farrell – Five News Sky News for Five News

News Programme of the Year: BBC News at Ten BBC News for BBC One
“In a vintage year for news output, this programme shone through. The jury felt it had led the way on a wide range of major stories and the experience and quality of its leading correspondents had simply been unmatched anywhere else. It had triumphed on the big story of the year but had supported that with first-class reporting throughout.”
Nominees: Five News with Natasha Kaplinsky Sky News for Five News / News at Ten ITV News

Camera Operator of the Year: Garwen McLuckie – Sky News Sky News
“The winner’s work in Africa was fearless and showed a remarkable empathy for the problems faced by people across the continent. His story-telling was impressive and his work demonstrated immense personal bravery and the highest technical skills.”
Nominees: Raul Gallego Abellan – Associated Press Television News Associated Press Television News / Stuart Webb – Channel 4 News ITN for Channel 4 News

Television Journalist of the Year
: Robert Peston – BBC News
“The winning correspondent produced probably the most sustained run of scoops and exclusives in the history of broadcast news in the UK… It would not be an exaggeration to say that a large part of the nation hung on the winner’s words every night – he personally revived appointment-to-view.”
Nominees: Martin Geissler – Africa Correspondent ITV News / Emma Hurd – Sky News Sky News

Lifetime Achievement Award: Peter Wilkinson
“This year’s winner is, for the first time, a cameraman.  He is not a household name – but you will all recognise his work. Many of the defining moments of our era have been captured through his lens, and he is one of the true pioneers of his trade.”

Judges Awards: Zimbabwe News Teams

“[This year’s Judges’ Award] recognises and salutes the work of a disparate collection of journalists, cameramen, producers and others who work under the radar, who have helped the outside world to report and understand a major international story that would otherwise have remained largely hidden from view.”

Gold Medal: Stewart Purvis
“[The Gold Medal goes] to someone whose name may not be widely known by the public but who has influenced, directly or indirectly, virtually everything we’ve seen on screen tonight. He is, without doubt, one of the makers of modern television news.

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BBC dominates list naming top political journalists

November 20th, 2008 | No Comments | Posted by in Magazines, Online Journalism

Total Politics, political blogger Iain Dale’s recently launched magazine, tomorrow publishes its list of top political journalists, as voted for by over 100 MPs, the magazine’s Facebook group of 500, and 130 lobby journalists. It can be viewed online, after registering, on the e-zine site.

Iain Dale told Journalism.co.uk that it’s “surprising that the BBC seems more loved by Conservative MPs and Labour MPs, but few will be surprised that Labour MPs rate Andrew Marr and James Naughtie highly.

“The surprise is that Andrew Neil doesn’t figure in the Top 20 of either party. Conservative MPs have shown a masochistic tendency by voting Jeremy Paxman at eight, but Labour MPs don’t include him in their Top 20 at all.”

Topping the overall list:
1. Evan Davis
2. Jeremy Paxman
3. Matthew Parris
4. Nick Robinson
5. John Humphrys

So who do the Tories like…?
1. Evan Davis
2. Jonathan Oliver
3. Jeremy Vine
4. Carolyn Quinn
5. Martha Kearney

And who do Labour like….?
1. Andrew Marr
2. Michael White
3. David Aaronovitch
4. Polly Toynbee
5. Evan Davis

And journalists themselves…?
1. Nick Robinson
2. Jeremy Paxman
3. Evan Davis
4. David Dimbleby
5. John Humphrys

And the top blog…? A certain Iain Dale’s Diary, followed by Tim Montgomerie (2) and Guido Fawkes (3).

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SIIA: Blogs are ‘print journalism pornography’, says Andrew Neil

September 11th, 2008 | 2 Comments | Posted by in Events, Journalism

The need for editors is greater now in the online age than ever, according to BBC broadcaster and all-round media mogul Andrew Neil.

Speaking at the SIIA Global Information Industry Summit, Neil said the internet had created a world in which the reader is ‘information rich, but quality poor’.

“What we need are trusted gatekeepers to decide what is accurate and what isn’t,” he said, adding that news requires ‘a good old-fashioned editorial process’ and a ‘trusted brand name’.

But this process cannot be replaced by blogs: “I will still enjoy them [blogs] as a form of entertainment or print journalism pornography.”

Neil went on to praise The Spectator’s online offering Coffee House, forgetting to mention that it’s billed as a blog:

Discussing Coffee House, Neil claimed the site attracts 200,000 unique users and 2 million page impressions a month. The site will soon account for 20 per cent of the Spectator’s ‘bottom line’, he added.

Blogs also came under scrutiny from Hugo Dixon, editor-in-chief of BreakingViews.com, who said that in terms of financial news trusted media brands are demanded by readers.

“There are some good things on blogs, but they don’t have the brand consistency of media brands. Brand matters, because financial professionals do not have the time to hunt: they need to no where someone’s coming from, the ethical basis, and does it have good access [to news and information]. I think very few blogs have good access.”

Dixon made a convincing case for the need for quality journalism online and how this can drive subscription-based revenue models and help editorial staff gain access to subjects and clients.

One of the blogs sporting ‘good things’ must be FT’s Alphaville – a site Dixon praised (though he never called it a blog) throughout the opening of his keynote speech, and which won a Webby award this year for the best business blog

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