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Article in ‘The Independent’ - Wednesday 18 February 2015 PDF Print E-mail
Written by John Boardman   
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 16:30

As I sat down at the computer this morning to scan through various news feeds, I was gripped by an article on the web site of ‘The Independent’ newspaper’. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/media/press/peter-oborne-resignation-senior-writer-dramatically-quits-telegraph-over-hsbc-allegations-10052314.html

The strapline for the article is:

“Peter Oborne resignation: Senior writer quits Telegraph dramatically over HSBC allegations”

The article includes the following:

“A senior writer at the Daily Telegraph has dramatically quit the newspaper after accusing its owners, the Barclay Brothers, of suppressing reports about the HSBC scandal out of fear of losing advertising revenue.

“Peter Oborne, the paper’s chief political commentator and an award-winning author, announced his resignation in a blog on the openDemocracy website, in which he accused the Telegraph of committing a 'fraud' on readers by burying reports on the HSBC tax scandal.

“The journalist quoted a conversation with Murdoch MacLennan, chief executive of Telegraph Media Group, who he said freely admitted that advertising was allowed to affect editorial at the paper.”

Further down, the article leads the reader to the following paragraph:

“In the article he declared that 'democracy itself is in peril if major newspapers allow corporations to influence their content for fear of losing advertising revenue'.”

I have often wondered if the reporting in our local newspapers of the activities of incumbent MP Andrew Stephenson is influenced by the amount of advertising space that he takes with them on a regular basis. Equally I wonder if this also leads to the suppression of the coverage of the activities of other candidates for public office!

A quick trawl through back copies of Pendle’s local newspapers to count the number of articles related to Andrew Stephenson certainly could give credence to the argument that advertising is allowed to affect editorial decisions at these newspapers.

Along with submitting this piece for inclusion on the ‘Pendle Labour Party blog’, I think that it is only fair that I send a copy to Pendle’s local newspapers, for them to publish and to comment on, if they wish to do so.


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The articles are written by individual members so do not necessarily represent the view of Pendle Labour Party.

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