Almost a year ago the government announced the setting up of a commission chaired by Dame Frances Cairncross to examine the future of local journalism. It reported earlier this month. Its purpose was to look into the sustainability of high-quality journalism, and threats to journalism, brought about by technological change and consumer behaviour. (See my blog ‘The Cairncross Review – can it reverse the decline of local and regional press?’ 8 July 2018 at : http://thespark.me.uk/?p=1019 )
It’s some 6 weeks since the brutal murder of Jamal Khashoggi, the Washington Post columnist in what, on the basis of the evidence so far, was a state sponsored killing, which took place in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey. To date the Saudi ruling elite, in the person of crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, the de facto head of state, claim to know nothing of the atrocity, but have arrested 18 people who are alleged to have been involved in the operation.
It’s been a hot summer, especially for the Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn, over his handling of the controversy concerning alleged anti-semitism in the party and its adoption of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) definition of anti-semitism together with examples. At its height, the dispute dominated the media and it is the way the media covered this controversy that has been the subject of an in-depth, academic-level research by the London based Media Reform Coalition (MRC). The report can be read at: http://www.mediareform.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/Labour-antisemitism-and-the-news-FINAL-PROOFED.pdf . Although published last month, the report has received little coverage in the mainstream media, but it has been given prominence in the daily socialist newspaper the Morning Star.