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Full Version: Corrupt British Press On Trial
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Quote:Miller, the star of "Alfie" and "Layer Cake," described being pursued down the street at midnight by 10 large men.

"And the fact that they had cameras in their hands meant that that was legal," said the 29-year-old actress. "But if you take away the cameras, what have you got? You’ve got a pack of men chasing a woman."

Witnesses’ detailed descriptions of aggressive press intrusion, broadcast live on British television, have focused public attention on murky tabloid practices.

Media lawyer David Allen Green wrote in a blog for the New Statesman magazine that the inquiry was already helping freedom of expression.

"The merit of the Leveson inquiry — regardless of its formal findings in its reports — is that it is giving a platform to those whose voices are deliberately smothered by the tabloid press," he wrote.

Not all the witnesses were famous. Some suffered because of proximity to fame. Mary Ellen Field, who worked for Elle Macpherson, recounted how the supermodel blamed her when personal stories started appearing in the press, and forced Field to go to a rehab facility in the U.S. for her — nonexistent — alcoholism.

Macpherson later learned her phone had been hacked — newspapers were getting information by illegal eavesdropping, not because of any indiscretion on Field’s part. Field had already been fired.

The parents of missing and murdered children told of much worse ordeals, of unbearable intrusion at times of grief.

Kate McCann, whose daughter Madeleine vanished during a family holiday in Portugal in 2007, said she felt "totally violated" when extracts from her private diary appeared in the News of the World tabloid in 2008.

"I just felt so worthless we’d been treated like that," she said.

Bob and Sally Dowler, whose 13-year-old daughter Milly was abducted and murdered in 2002, told how the same newspaper’s phone hacking had given them false hope that she was alive. After days of being told her voice mailbox was full, they were finally able to get through.

"And it clicked through onto her voicemail, so I heard her voice, and it was just like — I jumped — ’She’s picked up her voicemails, Bob, she’s alive,’" Sally Dowler said.

In fact, the voicemail had been interfered with by someone working for the News of the World, the Rupert Murdoch-owned tabloid whose illegal eavesdropping triggered the still-unfolding hacking scandal.

The revelation that the News of the World had targeted a teenage murder victim — as well as celebrities, politicians and public figures — shocked many Britons, led Murdoch to close the 168-year-old newspaper and set off a scandal that has shaken the country’s media, police and political establishments.

More than a dozen News of the World journalists and editors have been arrested, and the furor has claimed the jobs of two top London police officers, Prime Minister David Cameron’s media adviser and several senior Murdoch executives.

Cameron set up the inquiry, led by Judge Brian Leveson, to take a sweeping look at culture, ethics and practices in the British press. It is due to report next year and could recommend major changes to Britain’s system of media self-regulation.

So far, journalists and editors have not had the chance to defend themselves to the inquiry. Several are due to testify later, including CNN celebrity interviewer Piers Morgan, who has denied using phone hacking when he was editor of the Daily Mirror newspaper.

Many in the industry say wrongdoing was limited to a minority, and worry that the inquiry will recommend restricting press freedom.

Satchwell said much of the harassment described by witnesses is the fault of a small segment of the media — paparazzi. He said things have changed in Britain since the death of Princess Diana, who was killed in a car crash in Paris in 1997 while being pursued by photographers.

"The market for paparazzi photos in this country is much reduced," Satchwell said — but there is still a big market in other countries, including the United States.

"You cannot condemn the whole of the British press and try to set up some kind of draconian regulatory regime based on supposition or the fact that the paparazzi are at work," he said. "That would be both unfair and dangerous."

Grant, however, dismissed the notion that restrictions on media misbehavior might muzzle genuine journalism.

"The metaphor that’s endlessly bandied about is: be careful of throwing the baby out with the bath water," Grant told the inquiry.

"I’ve always said that I don’t think it is that difficult to tell the difference between what is bath water and what is a baby. To most people, it’s bloody obvious."

I actually kind of hope that we get to do the same here one day for our own corrupt american media. too many times they've gotten in the way of police investigations, etc, all in the name of journalism.
Yeah it's so hard when you are a millionaire just off doing nothing...
(12-02-2011, 04:52 PM)Fredledingue Wrote: [ -> ]Yeah it's so hard when you are a millionaire just off doing nothing...

If it was only celebs that they were stalking and stuff... I wouldn't really care as much.

however if you read the story they targeted normal people too... such as the parents of missing or dead kids.

they also targeted an teacher who was an suspect in one murder case, but turned out to be innocent as seeing they caught the real killer. The media constantly made up stuff about the teacher that was simply not true, and as an result his rep is forever ruined even though he was innocent of the murders.

How would you feel if it was you who was being stalked by those vultures? espeically if somebody very close to you died and there was a police investigation over it?
If the police even look at you funny, what is going to happen here? you had nothing to do with it, but the media is going to find ways to paint you as a perverted monster anyway regardless of the facts. think about that, dude.

That's why I fully support this trial... somebody needs to teach those dogs about what it means to go too far.