I did say you wouldn’t see me until Thursday but I just wanted to briefly speak about the forthcoming verdict from Lord Justice Leveson. I’ve mentioned the importance of free speech before but I can see where the victims of phone hacking are coming from so I’m in a bit of a quandary. The media cannot (I repeat), cannot be controlled by the government but a solution is needed. That’s why (I can’t believe I’m saying this but) I feel sorry for David Cameron, as he can do no right over the issue. I was going to lobby my MP on Thursday but we will instead discuss media reform next week when I go and do work experience for her.
My suggestion is a system of tougher self-regulation. Now, I realise this hasn’t worked in the past but I really feel everything that has happened in the media world has changed the industry for the better. Young journalists are now getting rigorous training in Professionalism & Ethics (like my class) so it is apparent what is right and wrong from day one. Note how most journalists who were caught being unethical such as Rebekah Brooks are older. I don’t mean to be ageist but there is a clear pattern, which suggests that established hacks seem to think they’re invincible. The emerging generation within the industry do not share this sense of entitlement.
Therefore, journalists who are just starting out should not be handicapped with legislation restricting the press just because of a minority of old-school journalists. Young people are normally blamed for most of societies ills but if the media does end up being regulated, young journalists will be the innocent victims of mistakes made by the ‘experienced’.
The Report is made public Thursday afternoon so we’ll have to wait and see what happens. I’ll give an updated opinion when I’ve digested it.
I’m off to a rather controversial lecture that I’ll be reporting on. But shhhhhhhhhhhh, I’m not a journalist. And I promise to keep you all updated.
Keep your eyes peeled.
Bye for now!