Monday, 28 March 2016

Times balance on Boris

A short post here around an opinion on Boris Johnson I heard through Radio 4 press review. Things are not as one sided as I first thought. The "Brexit" press is not of the same view all the time. Previously it seemed that the Boris challenge to Cameron had some wide support but Matthew Parris has raised doubts. " A careless disregard for the truth is not funny". Can't quote any more as it is behind a paywall. Not sure how this would work. you can find the into HERE.

There is reference to the Treasury Select Committee where Andrew Tyrie asked several questions about various claims Boris has made about the EU. There may be more of this as the referendum discussion continues.

Without quoting again, I do notice that in some remarks about future Tory leadership there is no mention of Michael Gove. He may be mentioned in a future column. I still think the Brexit energy comes in large parts from newspaper groups.

This blog is not going to cover everything. Suggest you try a few search terms if you need detail. Next concentrated set of posts when President Obama visits Europe. There is already some objection to his saying anything at all so interesting how it will be reported.

Monday, 21 March 2016

Brexit Press doing a great job inside Conservative Party

One thing is for sure, I am now spending much more money on newspapers than in recent past. I used to buy the Guardian on most days. The it seemed to me they reported less on citizen journalism and soforth so it got less interesting. Waitrose has a very good deal of a free paper if you spend £5 so I try to buy something on a Monday or Tuesday. Education and media are still covered to some extent.

Anyway, I am trying to work out from the Guardian today what is really going on. The Brexit aspect might get exaggerated in other papers but it seems to be a large part of it. Matthew d'Ancona ( @matthewdancona ) writes that the "Brexit party is really pushing its luck". I am not sure this is true, it might just be the Brexit press that is pushing the story.

The Times is supposed by Alastair Campbell to be a reasonably balanced paper compared to some others but I don't think the story about Cameron saying that Osborne had "messed up". The aim seems to be to destabilise anyone in favour of the UK remaining in the EU.

In the Mail Peter Oborne writes (Beginning of the end for Dave and George? p9) that "Boris is distrusted by a n umber of so not discount the chances of Michael Gove."  He has written an "emolliant" article praising both IDS and Osborne. So that might be the choice once the Brexit case is made. They are both journalists so there will be no shortage of copy.

Meanwhile tbe CBI warns of a shock to the UK economy if Brexit happened. Page 1 on Guardian and the rebuttal starts paragraph 6.  Page 12 in the Mail. "Scaremongering" in headline and para one. So the CBI joins the Bank of England as a source that will find it hard to get over a point of view. Page 37 in the Times, start of the business section. Rebuttal starts para 7 so this is maybe why Alastair Campbell thinks the Times has more balance.

What disturbs me is that I found the article by David Cameron in the Sunday Independent to be very low key and unconvincing by comparison. He worries about turnout but fails to show much of a positive case. Maybe he has spent too long with a nuanced negative view of the EU. My guess is that the Brexit press is strong with Conservative supporters.

Those concerned with the positive case for the EU may have to pay more attention to online media. More later on the BBC. They seem to be following the Fleet Street agenda fairly closely but maybe this will change. It might even happen they could be encouraged so to do.  

Wednesday, 16 March 2016

IPSO as Brexit reporting , Newsnight scope

Newsnight has put the whole item on YouTube, official. Took a while to get to the Sun story about the Queen. At which point the BBC host announced that Trevor Cavanagh could not comment about this as he is on the board of IPSO and there is a continuing investigation. "I'd love to answer that but I can't" added Trevor.

I have left a comment with my info as far as I know that the Guardian and FT are not part of IPSO. So IPSO is mostly the papers Alastair Campbell lists as being just a bit one sided pro Brexit. Will anyone ask questions about this? Might Newsnight look into it?

See previous post for  comment on Alastair Campbell blog.

By the way as memory serves Steve Wright in the afternoon once told us that the EU has recognised fish and chips as a UK dish but because of the regulations associated you have no choice about salt and vinegar they are part of the standard. This was described as a "factoid". As a bit of balance could they do the show from Brussels for a week?

If I made this up somehow in my memory please let me know. Also any info re IPSO most welcome. Will the investigation take so long the referendum will be over?

Monday, 14 March 2016

YouTube Playlist for this blog

So far only three. More later. Suggestions welcome. Link to playlist HERE

Alastair Campbell is on the case

I started with the print Observer and found this blog from Alastair Campbell. Much better sourced and written than anything I could come up with. So I will save some issues till after the Chilcot report whenever that is. Campbell is shocked at the bias in Fleet Street and offers several examples.

According to the Observer he could be on BBC Newsnight one evening this week. Press comment could be interesting. Will it be on YouTube via the official BBC channel or will it be pirated somehow. This matters because if there is some international interest there may be some media sources outside the UK system.

Somehow the BBC is obliged to regard as news the Boris view on Obama. The President has yet to visit the UK and is already under attack. More on this later but this week look out for Newsnight.

Update on misc bits of paper

Apologies for not updating this blog. I have decided to maintain it over the next few months but I do get distracted by other things. Hard to know where to start though. I have been buying occasional copies of the Sun, Telegraph and Times. It may be a closed world, quite a surprise for someone usually viewing BBC / reading Guardian.

Most surprising so far the Sun on March 3rd. Beeb's Army editorial complains that BBC has 37 journalists reporting Super Tuesday. "No, it's not half-price day at Tesco's." Probably right that many people would prefer BBC3 to continue as proper telly but this is a bit strange to object to international reporting so obviously. Maybe not, I may get used to this when the headlines grab me.

What strikes me most is that the big stories are intended to block opinions in favour of Europe from parrticular sources, so far the Queen and the Governor of the Bank of England are the most obvious. Times March 9th page 12 "Bank Chief Under Fire For Praising EU Benefits" mostly about the criticism of Mark Carney, not much about what he said.

Sunday Times 13th March page 21 Tim Shipman offers background to Sun story on the Queen. " She gave an FCO-approved speech at a state dinner in Berlin last June calling for unity in Europe". Apparently this was seen as a "pro-EU tract". Is she supposed not to visit Berlin? If this is her official view could it not be more widely reported?

Jonathan Freedland in the Guardian has suggested the out campaign may regret the effect of the leaks on support for the monarchy. I am not so sure that News International or Rupert Murdoch might not be relaxed about a republic. Of course this is speculation but just a possibility to consider during this blog. What would most people think in the USA?

One web link as I am not buying the Daily Mail very often.

Pro-Brexit minister is believed to be source of Queen's reported remarks

Read more:
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

According to Tim Shipman Cameron will wait on the IPSO investigation before Sir Jeremy Heywood would become involved.  However long this takes my guess is that Gove, like Boris, has a more secure future in journalism than government.

Good news for this blog then but too much copy to keep up with.

Monday, 7 March 2016

Introducing this blog

Why another blog? should I be updating the previous blogs?

Thing is that the EU debate in UK is getting interesting. Not the content, an exercise so far in who can imagine the greatest danger. But the Fleet Street mainstream seems to me to be so over the top that it may get itself into question. Not the Daily Mirror, Guardian or FT. they each have a niche where things are more or less sensible.

But the others have fairly recent experience of  a general election in which Miliband was monstered in effective manner. They seem to think they can continue this sort of approach on Europe, a land of immigrants chaos and benefit claims.

More detail later. I have started to spend money again on newspapers.

Of course this outline scope is just a guess. If UK actually leaves EU then some of us will need a cyberspace equivalent, either an archive or imagined future.