|Pic: Press Gazette|
Abdalaziz Alhamza, a founder of the Syrian citizen journalists website Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently, accepting the Marie Colvin Award at the British Journalism Awards in London: “Our work shows that we can fight arms with words, and that ultimately is the only way to defeat them, and ISIS knows it. That is why it has killed many of our colleagues both in Syria and even outside of Syria. ISIS is afraid. It is afraid most of one idea: Liberty.”
Daniel Finkelstein in The Times [£] on populism: "The next stage in advancing populism is to attack anybody who challenges the exclusive right of the populist party to define or interpret the national interest. It is vital, for instance, to attack the mainstream media and use social media to communicate with people directly."
Andrew Phillips, Liberal Democrat, House of Lords, in a letter to the Guardian about the decline of magistrates courts: "Local newspaper reporting of cases, which used to be a considerable deterrent to crime, has largely dried up."
Dow Jones ceo Will Lewis interviewed in The Drum: “The digital advertising revenue that we (news organisations) had all been forecasting has been ‘half-inched’ by Facebook and Google. They have taken the money to advertise around our content. It’s wrong and it has to stop.”
Daily Mail in a leader: "It is no exaggeration to say that our judges have progressively assumed the role of the overtly political Supreme Court in Washington. But the crucial difference is that the American court’s judges are appointed only after intensive public scrutiny of their personal and political views. Ours, by contrast – all white, 91 per cent male, average age 68, nine from public schools and nine from Oxbridge – are selected by a cosy five-person ‘special commission’, out of public sight. That is why it is so essential for a free Press to subject judges – no less than politicians, civil servants or archbishops – to the scrutiny they would otherwise escape.Since judges are unaccountable, as former Tory leader Lord Howard QC puts it: ‘It’s of the utmost importance that the judiciary should not be immune from robust criticism.’ Though Remainers and the Left may hurl abuse at us, this paper, for one, will always take seriously our role as the Champions of the People."
Paul Dacre, quoted by Press Gazette after standing down as chairman of the Editors' Code Committee: "I still have to pinch myself that we live in a country in which the Government’s press regulator is financed by Max Mosley and that papers who refuse to sign up to it will not only face punitive damages in libel courts but could be forced to pay a claimant’s costs even if the article concerned is entirely true and the paper wins its case. Which is why my contempt for those so-called liberals who insidiously conspire to manacle press freedom is only matched by my admiration for those in our industry who strive to preserve it."
Nick Cohen in the Observer: " 'Progressive' politicians and the allegedly liberal celebs in Hacked Off profess to be Trump’s opponents. But they, too, find self-interested reasons to censor. The liberal-left hate the Mail and the Murdoch press for reasons I understand. They don’t care that the Guardian and Private Eye, which exposed the hacking scandal, along with every other decent news organisation, won’t submit to [Max] Mosley’s regulation either. Their desire to punish their enemies overrides basic liberal principles. More importantly, they lack the political imagination to realise how their own betrayals of liberalism will be exploited. Think of it. The state can license a plutocrat to establish a regulator. Publishers who refuse to co-operate will face costs they can’t afford to meet, even if what they write about a Russian oligarch, a New York property tycoon or a Turkish secret policeman is true. Wolfish strongmen all over the world will watch Britain’s experiment with punishing journalists for reporting accurately with fascination. As Trump has shown, we are their inspiration and their justification."
Piers Morgan on MailOnline on Donald Trump's use of Twitter: "As someone who also loves Twitter and has also been known to stir the pot with incendiary tweets to gain attention (‘We do it the same way!’ Trump chuckled on our phone call), I am in awe of his absolute mastery of the medium. I’m also flabbergasted at just how dumb much of the American media has been, and continues to be, in letting Trump play them in such an obvious way. Every time they throw their high-minded journalistic toys out of their strollers at one of his tweets, Trump wins. His brand thrives on the oxygen of TV coverage, newspaper headlines and the media’s faux outrage. It always has."
- My Media Quotes of the Year are on InPublishing here