Thursday, 23 February 2017

Media Quotes of the Week: From US journalists hit back at Trump's attack on media to is the British press up to the challenge of covering Brexit?

President Trump, as reported by BBC News: "Unfortunately, much of the media in Washington, D.C., along with New York, Los Angeles in particular, speaks not for the people, but for the special interests and for those profiting off a very, very obviously broken system. The press has become so dishonest that if we don't talk about, we are doing a tremendous disservice to the American people. Tremendous disservice. We have to talk to find out what's going on, because the press honestly is out of control. The level of dishonesty is out of control."

Donald J. Trump ‏@realDonaldTrump on Twitter: "The FAKE NEWS media (failing @nytimes, @NBCNews, @ABC, @CBS, @CNN) is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American People!"

Dan Rather on Facebook: "I have resisted commenting on President Trump's outrageous attack on the press with his tweet calling the media 'the enemy of the American people.' It is a sentiment that is a deep betrayal of our national history. The evidence to the contrary is so overwhelming that to choose any one example is to play into the alternate reality Mr. Trump is seeking to exploit for his cynical political purposes. My message is not for he who will not listen. Instead I wish to address his enablers, specifically those in the Republican Party who by their silence on this travesty normalize a behaviour that is antithetical to our Constitutional principles. Future generations will not look kindly on profiles in cowardice. And to my fellow journalists, I know you will not be bullied or intimidated. Keep doing your job. Your country depends on your service. Courage."

Graydon Carter in Vanity Fair: "We aren’t even a third of the way through the administration’s 100-day honeymoon period and let’s face it: we’re plumb exhausted. We’re exhausted from the flurry of rash executive orders. Exhausted from the human carnage in the wake of the president’s ban on travelers from majority-Muslim countries. Exhausted from the battles with neighbors, allies, and strategic adversaries on the world stage. Exhausted from the lies, the alternative facts, the boasts, the conflicts, and the scandals from this 'fine-tuned machine.' Exhausted from our president’s cavalier habit of belittling our judiciary and intelligence services. Exhausted from having craven boneheads chosen to lead departments governing the environment, the Treasury, education, and the interior. Exhausted from an administration that turns a blind eye to Russian intrusions into Crimea, our election, and the imminent elections in Europe. Exhausted from the West Wing circus of misfits, clowns, and ghouls—politics’ answer to the Kardashians. Exhausted from the preening arrogance of the members of the First Family. Exhausted from waking up and not knowing what fresh hell this new president and his birdcage of a mind have cooked up overnight."

Marina Hyde in the Guardian: "Perhaps it’s time to ease off on news of Trump’s latest 'unprecedented attack on the media', on the basis that it is not only increasingly precedented, but is rapidly becoming so familiar that it is barely even news. Whatever the frisson of being insulted by the president may feel like to the reporters it’s happening to, it’s not the most important thing to anyone else. Just because the troll moved into the White House, it doesn’t mean the advice about handling him became suddenly invalid. Don’t feed him."

Piers Morgan on MailOnline: "Frankly, I have never seen such a concerted campaign of vicious personal vilification against a newly elected president. However, it would also be true to say I have never seen a newly elected president mount such a concerted campaign of vicious vilification against the media."

Stig Abell‏@StigAbell on Twitter: "MorePeople who read think-pieces about danger of Trump's attacks on the media need no convincing; people he talks to don't read the think-pieces."

Damian Collins MP , chair of the Culture, Media and Sport Committee, quoted by Press Gazette: “If the vast majority of newspapers and magazines continue to refuse, on principle, to accept regulation under the terms of the Royal Charter, then the government should create an alternative path, that would allow IPSO to become established as the preferred body to take responsibility for the self-regulation of the press. However for this to be achieved, the committee believes that IPSO needs to make substantial progress in establishing a low cost arbitration scheme to consider complaints against the press, to increase the resources at its disposal to launch investigations, and to fund a campaign to inform the public about how and where to make complaints to IPSO. If IPSO can make the necessary reforms to become compliant with the spirt of the Leveson recommendations, then the government should repeal the provisions within Section 40 that relate to the awarding of costs in court cases taken up against the press.”

Fergal Keane ‏@fergalkeane on Twitter on Steve Hewlett who died this week: "The brightest, funniest and best. So brave as a journalist and man. He was a powerful antidote to the suits and placemen. I've never worked with a sharper editor and one who always had your back whatever the consequences. RIP."

Melanie Phillips in The Times [£]: "For nearly two decades I wrote for The Guardian and The Observer, from which Eden I was eventually driven out by the disgrace of my political heresies. From the late Eighties, I followed where the evidence led me to challenge one politically correct doctrine after another."

Grimsby Telegraph editor Michelle Lalor in an email to staff, reported by Press Gazette: “Today I say goodbye to an industry that I have lived and loved for almost 30 years – many of those spent in the newsrooms of Grimsby and Scunthorpe, which I have led for almost two decades. Sadly the Telegraphs in both towns now move forward with no editor, a person who has been so vital over the years in setting the tone for the towns, which are still true communities...While we must all embrace change, we must never lose that fight! Thank you for the good times…a truly sad end to a wonderful career.”

Sarah Helm in the Guardian on the challenge of covering Brexit: "So distorted was British coverage of Brussels over 40 years that it was hardly surprising 'the people' were confused about why Europe mattered. Indeed, Boris Johnson, now foreign secretary, is largely responsible for the biased coverage after inventing his own potent brand of 'fake news' while a Brussels correspondent for the Daily Telegraph – a brand he then flogged during the Brexit campaign. British journalism is now having to play catch-up on a complex story much of it never bothered to understand, at a time when newsrooms are stripped to the bone."


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