[Debate] – Should there be greater restrictions on the press?

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Andrew97
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In the aftermath of the death of Love Island Presenter Caroline Flack there has been a lot of criticism of the tabloid press, in particular over their coverage of abuse allegations made by her boyfriend.

The 40 year old committed suicide on Saturday, whilst waiting for her trial on the aforementioned allegations. An online petition calling for a review into the media has attracted more than 200,000 signatures

Meanwhile the CPS has defended its decision to press charges, despite the assault allegations being withdrawn. This also comes as the media has received scrutiny at criticism over its treatment of Meghan Markle.

Do we think the media should have greater restrictions on what it can print, and what it can do? Where does social media fit into this?
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The Mogg
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Absolutely not. As soon as the state start infringing on freedom of the press and saying what it can and can't print to this extent, we step into statist ground.

The people signing the petition will mostly be pretending to care now but as soon as this dies down in like a week they'll go back to not caring.

(Also, nice to see these back in the absence of any new items in the past 4 days. Jolly good job Andrew)
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Andrew97
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This was meant to be in the update tonight but the thread got put into moderation almost immeadiatly. I will put it in the update tomorrow.
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abucha3
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(Original post by The Mogg)
Absolutely not. As soon as the state start infringing on freedom of the press and saying what it can and can't print to this extent, we step into statist ground.
Absolutely agree with this.

Also, Caroline Flack abused her boyfriend, or there was certainly sufficient grounds to press charges, so of course the press will comment on this. Flack was also made famous because of reality TV; I think if you want to be a reality TV celebrity, then you need to expect this kind of press attention.

Of course any suicide is a tragedy, and I am incredibly sorry to hear this happened, but I think to blame the press would be unjustified.

I would also point out, if a man was being accused of abusing a woman, and then committed suicide, there would not be this sort of reaction on social media about it, no way
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04MR17
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In principle, the press should not be regulated by politicians. The IPSO exists, and while it might not be perfect its existence ought to be recognised in this thread.

What I would like to see is more carefully placed monopoly controls over the media industry. I maintain that the most powerful man in the world is Rupert Murdoch, on account of his ability to influence so many people. The media industry holds power in more than economic and political areas, but strays into the moral and psychological consciousness of the population.

(Original post by Andrew97)
This was meant to be in the update tonight but the thread got put into moderation almost immeadiatly. I will put it in the update tomorrow.
Likely due to the 6th word on the second paragraph. Feeds into a (necessary) site filter for these topics.
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londonmyst
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No.

There should be greater use of exemplary damages and large fines to penalise media outlets that indulge in defamatory conduct or illegal activities.
Unlawful harassment campaigns, publishing grossly offensive content, trespassing onto private property to steal/photograph/video record, entering into criminal conspiracies with third parties or breaching court issued injunctions/reporting restrictions.
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Rakas21
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(Original post by Andrew97)
In the aftermath of the death of Love Island Presenter Caroline Flack there has been a lot of criticism of the tabloid press, in particular over their coverage of abuse allegations made by her boyfriend.

The 40 year old committed suicide on Saturday, whilst waiting for her trial on the aforementioned allegations. An online petition calling for a review into the media has attracted more than 200,000 signatures

Meanwhile the CPS has defended its decision to press charges, despite the assault allegations being withdrawn. This also comes as the media has received scrutiny at criticism over its treatment of Meghan Markle.

Do we think the media should have greater restrictions on what it can print, and what it can do? Where does social media fit into this?
(Original post by The Mogg)
Absolutely not. As soon as the state start infringing on freedom of the press and saying what it can and can't print to this extent, we step into statist ground.
This.

While i do think that individuals should have a greater right to privacy than they do currently in terms of the media (perhaps wider exclusion zones around the homes of people) the state should absolutely not censure the press since they can be sued for libel already. The erosion of free speech in general has been greatly negative in my opinion.
(Original post by 04MR17)
In principle, the press should not be regulated by politicians. The IPSO exists, and while it might not be perfect its existence ought to be recognised in this thread.

What I would like to see is more carefully placed monopoly controls over the media industry. I maintain that the most powerful man in the world is Rupert Murdoch, on account of his ability to influence so many people. The media industry holds power in more than economic and political areas, but strays into the moral and psychological consciousness of the population.


Likely due to the 6th word on the second paragraph. Feeds into a (necessary) site filter for these topics.
No such monopoly exists even in the physical domain for daily newspaper sales, only a plurality. Figures for 2019 suggest that the Murdoch press has about a third of the market. The Sun and Times do have a combined monopoly of Sunday newspapers (though some papers don't print on a weekend) but they are very different papers in fairness. The Times for example is probably the most respected Newspaper there is (Guardian and Telegraph are great but accused of bias by either side).
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04MR17
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(Original post by Rakas21)
No such monopoly exists even in the physical domain for daily newspaper sales, only a plurality. Figures for 2019 suggest that the Murdoch press has about a third of the market. The Sun and Times do have a combined monopoly of Sunday newspapers (though some papers don't print on a weekend) but they are very different papers in fairness. The Times for example is probably the most respected Newspaper there is (Guardian and Telegraph are great but accused of bias by either side).
Did I say such a monopoly exists?
Didn't think so. I stand by my original comments that we need to be careful about monopolies. Whether publications cater to very different audiences or not, having influence of a third of a the UK's press readership is still a hugely powerful position to hold - I'd rather leading politicians didn't have to wine and dine Murdoch in order to win an election, but the recent trends speak for themselves.
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Rakas21
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(Original post by 04MR17)
Did I say such a monopoly exists?
Didn't think so. I stand by my original comments that we need to be careful about monopolies. Whether publications cater to very different audiences or not, having influence of a third of a the UK's press readership is still a hugely powerful position to hold - I'd rather leading politicians didn't have to wine and dine Murdoch in order to win an election, but the recent trends speak for themselves.
You talk about political trends but in many ways the Murdoch press especially simply follows trends rather than creates them. It is not in the interest of the media to support causes or parties likely to lose.
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Jammy Duel
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(Original post by 04MR17)
In principle, the press should not be regulated by politicians. The IPSO exists, and while it might not be perfect its existence ought to be recognised in this thread.

What I would like to see is more carefully placed monopoly controls over the media industry. I maintain that the most powerful man in the world is Rupert Murdoch, on account of his ability to influence so many people. The media industry holds power in more than economic and political areas, but strays into the moral and psychological consciousness of the population.


Likely due to the 6th word on the second paragraph. Feeds into a (necessary) site filter for these topics.
Why am I not surprised it took long for the Murdoch boogyman to come up, tbh it shows just how thick some people believe the common man to be (and one wonders why such groups have such poor electoral records).

The idea that Murdoch has this great power is quite absurd. If we look at the UK, for instance, Murdoch owns the Times and Sun (and formerly news of the world) in the print media sphere. The sun has average circulation of 1.4m and The Times about 400k, in other words the Murdoch press has a circulation of 1.8m in a country of about 65m, only about 3% of the population, let's be generous and say 5% because maybe multiple people read some copies. Even when we look in terms not of the whole population but the paper reading population it is only up to about 25%.

Even if we go along the "The Sun has always backed the winner in general elections" line that does not mean they influence their readers sufficiently to sway the election, there is another more probable reason: their position moves with their readership. There is also clearly plenty of editorial freedom given to the papers themselves given The Times and The Sun don't always go for the same narrative or endorsements, and even Times vs Sunday Times isn't always agreement.

As for Sky, I think I've said it enough last term: Communications Act 2003 section 320
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Jammy Duel
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(Original post by 04MR17)
Did I say such a monopoly exists?
Didn't think so. I stand by my original comments that we need to be careful about monopolies. Whether publications cater to very different audiences or not, having influence of a third of a the UK's press readership is still a hugely powerful position to hold - I'd rather leading politicians didn't have to wine and dine Murdoch in order to win an election, but the recent trends speak for themselves.
Which person or entity has influence, by which I assume you mean control, of a third of the UK press readership?

The closest we get to that is the BBC which has about 30% of the online viewership, but I doubt that's a monopoly you want killing

Well behind the BBC with only about 9% is Microsoft via MSN

After that with about 7% comes DMG

Even the Telegraph is bigger than Sky when it comes to the internet, or at least it was back in 2015

AOL was bigger than newscorp, and that's probably just off the back of people who had AOL as their ISP back in the day, Disney is also bigger, and ****ing Buzzfeed is more than double the size

Add Sky and Newscorp and you're about on par with the Guardian

https://www.similarweb.com/blog/inde...ations-of-2015
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CatusStarbright
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It's actually pretty incredible that the CPS had to defend its decision to charge. There seems to be a lack of information/a lot of misinformation out there about how the CPS operates, and about what existing laws we have to protect people's privacy. I occasionally get emails from Change.org about trending petitions and I was sent one pushing for tighter laws in this area. Upon reading, I realised that a lot of what the petition was calling for was already in place, and the parts that weren't were likely to infringe upon the liberty of the press.
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04MR17
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(Original post by Jammy Duel)
Which person or entity has influence, by which I assume you mean control, of a third of the UK press readership?

The closest we get to that is the BBC which has about 30% of the online viewership, but I doubt that's a monopoly you want killing

Well behind the BBC with only about 9% is Microsoft via MSN

After that with about 7% comes DMG

Even the Telegraph is bigger than Sky when it comes to the internet, or at least it was back in 2015

AOL was bigger than newscorp, and that's probably just off the back of people who had AOL as their ISP back in the day, Disney is also bigger, and ****ing Buzzfeed is more than double the size

Add Sky and Newscorp and you're about on par with the Guardian

https://www.similarweb.com/blog/inde...ations-of-2015
I didn't say any person had that influence. Rakas said Murdoch has about a third of the market. If you want to challenge that, take it up with him.
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04MR17
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(Original post by Jammy Duel)
Why am I not surprised it took long for the Murdoch boogyman to come up, tbh it shows just how thick some people believe the common man to be (and one wonders why such groups have such poor electoral records).

The idea that Murdoch has this great power is quite absurd. If we look at the UK, for instance, Murdoch owns the Times and Sun (and formerly news of the world) in the print media sphere. The sun has average circulation of 1.4m and The Times about 400k, in other words the Murdoch press has a circulation of 1.8m in a country of about 65m, only about 3% of the population, let's be generous and say 5% because maybe multiple people read some copies. Even when we look in terms not of the whole population but the paper reading population it is only up to about 25%.
Yes, it does.

Is that print or online (or both)?
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Jammy Duel
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(Original post by 04MR17)
Yes, it does.

Is that print or online (or both)?
Print papers he owns have about a quarter of national circulation, as should be pretty obvious given the quoted post was talking about the print media...
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Jammy Duel
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(Original post by Rakas21)
This.

While i do think that individuals should have a greater right to privacy than they do currently in terms of the media (perhaps wider exclusion zones around the homes of people) the state should absolutely not censure the press since they can be sued for libel already. The erosion of free speech in general has been greatly negative in my opinion.

No such monopoly exists even in the physical domain for daily newspaper sales, only a plurality. Figures for 2019 suggest that the Murdoch press has about a third of the market. The Sun and Times do have a combined monopoly of Sunday newspapers (though some papers don't print on a weekend) but they are very different papers in fairness. The Times for example is probably the most respected Newspaper there is (Guardian and Telegraph are great but accused of bias by either side).
Where do you get this third figure from? And to suggest the Times isn't accused of bias is simply absurd, about as absurd as suggesting Murdoch controls the world
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Rakas21
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(Original post by Jammy Duel)
Where do you get this third figure from? And to suggest the Times isn't accused of bias is simply absurd, about as absurd as suggesting Murdoch controls the world
Slight rounding. 1.8m out of about 6m.
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ThomH97
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No, provided what they are reporting is true.

Regarding Caroline Flack, there are certain things you cannot consent to, even if you forgive the person who did them to you. I certainly didn't read the full extent of the tabloid coverage, but I'm happy that the media saw a case of domestic violence and kept it in the public consciousness when potentially it could have been hushed up. I'm also happy for deliberately famous people to be under greater scrutiny and held to account for their (non)examplary behaviour.
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adam271
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Restrictions on press will just be exploited by the more nefarious.

Eg super injunctions used by the wealthy for trivial matters.
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Jammy Duel
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(Original post by Rakas21)
Slight rounding. 1.8m out of about 6m.
Where do you get your 6m from? Your top 5 papers alone are just shy of that, top 5 means you're still excluding significant publications like the Telegraph and Express

there is also an even better way to present 1.8m as a proportion of 6m...30%...
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