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Independent.co.uk: Is Martin Newland stepping down as the National’s editor already?

June 8th, 2009 | 3 Comments | Posted by in Editors' pick, Newspapers

Update 2 9/07/09: Jen Gerson’s update: Newland is ‘up’ not ‘out’ she says. Here’s the National’s report on the changes. Newland ‘has left the editorship for a more business-focused role overseeing the newspaper as its editorial director,’ it said.

Update 8/07/09: (via @SpotonPR) AdNation Middle East reports, following speculation, (see example below) that ‘Martin Newland has stepped aside as editor of The National, he officially announced today at a newsroom meeting at the Abu Dhabi paper, according to posts on Twitter by journalists at the paper’. The article states:

“The former Telegraph editor will remain at the paper as editorial director. Hassan Fattah, currently deputy editor, will take on the Big Chair, and Bob Cowan will become deputy in his place.”

Jen Gerson (@jengerson), a tourism reporter at the paper, tweeted one hour ago:

“Newland standing aside as editor in ‘worst kept secret in Abu Dhabi.’ Wants to move into business side.”

Speculation from the ‘Feral Beast’ column in yesterday’s Independent on Sunday:

“Just a year after the launch of The National in Abu Dhabi, rumours swirl that Martin Newland is to step down. The former Daily Telegraph editor set up the English-language paper, recruiting several ex-Telegraph hacks to join him.

“(…) My mole says Newland will continue to work for the paper but not as editor. I’m told his replacement will need to be pro the Emirates government and royal family, its proprietors. Newland did not return my calls.”

Full column at this link… (Hat tip: @PaulMcNally for Press Gazette)

What appeared to be details of the National’s salaries, including Martin Newland’s, were leaked earlier this year, as reported by the Guardian’s Media Monkey. Monkey suggested that, if ‘figures are believed’, Newland took home ‘a cool tax-free annual take home of about £320,000 a year’.

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The BBC is in ‘a vortex of its own making’ Paxman tells awards audience

April 28th, 2009 | No Comments | Posted by in Broadcasting, Events, Journalism

BBC Newsnight star presenter Jeremy Paxman is never known to mince his words and he certainly didn’t when receiving the Annual Media Society Award last Thursday evening in London. The ‘Great Inquisitor’ attacked the BBC, saying that it was ‘in a vortex of its own making’.

He criticised cuts on his own programme – “people at the top are no longer interested in what we do or how we do it” –  to the audience that included Helen Boaden, BBC director of news, Stephen Mitchell, her deputy, and no less that six former or present editors of Newsnight.

Paxman was stinging in his criticism of the cuts in the media outside the BBC as well, saying it was ‘now cheaper to print opinion that the truth'; and that some major American papers no longer had a full-time correspondent or even a stringer in London. He described the current situation as ‘depressing’.

Paxman, who has now presented Newsnight for 20 years, was the subject of paeans of public praise from his bosses past – including Robin Walsh, who gave him his first reporter’s job in BBC Northern Ireland 35 years ago – and who had the audience reeling, with his tales of ‘Paxo’ interviewing the Appointments Board – and Peter Barron, the last Newsnight editor who had forced Paxman into the digital 21st century and to do a (short-lived) weather forecast on the programme.

The tributes were all warm, especially from his most high profile victim former Home Secretary, Michael Howard, of whom Paxman famously asked the same question 12 times in 1997. Time had healed the rift.

It was not all downbeat. Paxman said that if he had his time again he would still join ‘our trade,’ and become a journalist, as he had at 23. “I’ve spent my life talking to amusing people. It is an incredible privilege to work with thoughtful, clever, funny people,” he said, saluting the teams who had made it all possible. “There are no solos in television – everything is collaborative. Even the gargantuan egos!”

For this British giant, the basic premises of journalism remain, for what is still the same job. To be good, one needs to be ‘curious’ and have ‘instinct’ and in ‘Paxo’s’ case, plenty of Chutzpah.

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BroadcastNow.co.uk: Hockaday replaces Horrocks as head of BBC multimedia newsroom

April 17th, 2009 | No Comments | Posted by in Broadcasting, Editors' pick, Jobs

BroadcastNow reports that Peter Horrocks’ deputy Mary Hockaday has been appointed as head of the BBC multimedia newsroom.

Full story at this link…

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Washingtonpost.com: Bloggers break news of Sarah Palin’s pregnant daughter

September 2nd, 2008 | No Comments | Posted by in Editors' pick

Reports on the Daily Kos that John McCain’s deputy Sarah Palin was actually the grandmother and not the mother of her young son eventually exposed the fact that Palin’s daughter was pregnant.

But should such news be made public in this way? And are political parties having to react to too many ‘reports’ from the blogs?

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