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Leveson - the outcome

(139 Posts)
bunchamunchycrunchycarrots Wed 28-Nov-12 22:14:28

previous thread & another one

So, the report will finally be made public tomorrow - wonder what the outcome will be? Will Cameron actually go with the recommendations or not?


pofacedalways Thu 29-Nov-12 23:34:49

bunchamunchy the impression I got from channel 4 news is that he has rather rich and powerful people funding his campaigning that wish to remain anonymous, and I find that of great concern if these people wish to change the law.

claig Thu 29-Nov-12 23:49:06

The hacking scandal seems to go back to the royal hacking scandal of 2005-2006 or maybe even before that.

Hacked Off don't seem to have their own wikipedia page - they have something on the Media Standards Trust page which says

'In light of the June 2011 allegations of the News of the World journalists phone hacking into the mobilephone voice mail of murder victim Milly Dowler, on 5 July 2011 in partnership with Professor Brian Cathcart and other concerned individuals, MST formed the "Hacked Off" campaign. Registering the site, the campaign aimed to campaign for a public inquiry into phone hacking.'

claig Fri 30-Nov-12 00:05:43

Was there a call for a public inquiry before the Labour Party Conference in 2009, when Murdoch backed New Labour?

Was there a call for a public inquiry when the royals wer hacked?

bunchamunchycrunchycarrots Fri 30-Nov-12 00:08:37

po I understand that is your view of Hugh Grant, and the various interviews he's been giving over this issue. But, this isn't his campaign. He has been instrumental, granted, but this is much, much bigger than being about slebs flexing their financial muscle to get the press to leave them alone to get up to whatever they like.

This article explains a little where his interest comes from, and why he got more involved in this campaign. The article was printed before the Milly Dowler hacking story 'took off'.

This programme that Grant made, in the lead up to the Leveson report being published, contains an interview between grant and Paul McMullen, the journalist who originally spiked his interest in delving further into what the press were doing. It's interesting in the context of the original meeting he had/the article he wrote ^^ above.

I'm not Grant's cheer leader, honest, but I think you are being a little harsh on him and his role in all of this. He stands up and speaks publicly, and very articulately, on behalf of the likes of the Watsons, the McCanns, the Dowlers, and the Chris Jeffries of the world. He gets noticed and his/their views across very well IMO. His fame has meant their views gained a wider audience by virtue of being voiced by someone like him.

claig Fri 30-Nov-12 00:20:37

'In light of the June 2011 allegations of the News of the World journalists phone hacking into the mobilephone voice mail of murder victim Milly Dowler, on 5 July 2011 in partnership with Professor Brian Cathcart and other concerned individuals, MST formed the "Hacked Off" campaign. Registering the site, the campaign aimed to campaign for a public inquiry into phone hacking. The campaign was directly supported by: Lord Fowler, Professor Onora O’Neill, Francis Wheen, Tom Watson MP, Dr Ben Goldacre, Baroness Helena Kennedy, Sir David Bell, DD Guttenplan, Professor Roy Greenslade, Professor Ian Hargreaves, John Lloyd, Isabel Hilton, Ian Jack, John Pilger, John Prescott, Richard Peppiatt, Andreas Whittam Smith and others. Soon after launch, the campaign gained the support of actor Hugh Grant, who became a public spokesperson, appearing on Question Time and Newsnight.'

bunchamunchycrunchycarrots Fri 30-Nov-12 01:18:36

Was there a call for a public inquiry before the Labour Party Conference in 2009, when Murdoch backed New Labour?

Not as far as I'm aware. My understanding is, that in 2006? (need to verify the date) when the story was brought up again i.e. the hacking was not the 'one rogue reporter' but wide spread/endemic, that was when Yates reviewed the 'evidence' for 8 hours and decided there was no case to answer.

Was there a call for a public inquiry when the royals wer hacked?

No, but then there was the 'one rogue reporter' who was sacrificed, as well as Glenn Mulcaire, and they were both jailed for their part in this. It's the evidence that wasn't investigated further, that was uncovered during this part of the story, that became such an issue later on once the story did gain momentum AFAIK. The inquiry only came about once the Milly Dowler story broke, and the whistle blowers who came forward to debunk the 'one rogue reporter' theory when the Royals had been hacked earlier.

pofacedalways Fri 30-Nov-12 09:48:06

Bunchy I don't think it is particularly harsh to raise questions about a campaign led by HG concerning the anonymous and powerful donors behind it trying to change the law! That isn't harsh that is just, er, debate.

pofacedalways Fri 30-Nov-12 09:50:03

and I said funding his campaigning not funding his campaign wink

<not passive aggressive wink honest>

chipstick10 Fri 30-Nov-12 09:53:57

Hugh grant makes me vomit in my own mouth. I want to slap his annoying face very hard. He has had a massive anger and large French fries hanging off his shoulders since the press had a field day with mr grant getting caught with his trousers down on sunset boulevard with the divine misss brown. He is dressing this whole thing up into "the poor victims" when really he wants revenge on the press barons for the misery he thinks they have caused him.

pofacedalways Fri 30-Nov-12 09:58:02

Now that's harsh grin

edam Fri 30-Nov-12 10:02:19

Hugh Grant has a point. He isn't just complaining about celeb tittle tattle that he didn't like. It's about the treatment of the mother of his child, who is a private individual. And he's the public face of those who have been wronged - some of whom, presumably, want nothing more to do with the press (the family of the girl who was murdered where press coverage drove her brother to suicide, for instance).

But let's not forget it was other journalists who exposed the hacking scandal, in the teeth of considerable opposition from the police and government and Murdoch. There were extremely powerful people rubbishing the Guardian investigation and journalists - the most senior officers in the Met, the Prime Minister and senior politicians, and of course Murdoch and his lieutenants. The Guardian exposed extreme wrongdoing through dogged journalism. They were sneered at by Cameron, by the then Chair of the Press Complaints Commission and by the Met who kept saying 'move along here, nothing to see'. And by the CPS who bizarrely decided phone hacking wasn't a crime unless you could prove a journalist had listened to the message before the recipient. WTF.

The Met were amazingly intransigent, to the point of refusing to look at records, refusing to tell people whose phones had been hacked that they were victims, and refusing even to look around the News International Offices when they arrested the royal reporter. They didn't want to find out what had been going on. This was corruption on a grand scale, of police, politicians and one of the most powerful businesses in the country and the journalists who worked there.

Yet Murdoch has got off scott-free and now Leveson has failed to hold the police and government to account. He says the police were not great, but that's it.

Btw, the idea that it was mere reporters and editors at the Screws and the Sun who decided to hack phones off their own back is rubbish. It was Murdoch who established the culture where nothing mattered, just the story. Who insisted on that level of savage competition for stories. And his senior staff who were so desperate to please him they demanded journalists hack phones.

It was proprietors (such as the Express Group) who decided not to waste money on investigative journalism and just dial up celebrity voicemail or invent horrible stories about the McCann's.

This isn't just about individual journalists - some of whom did terrible things. It's about senior executives and proprietors, some of the most senior policemen in the country, the CPS and the Prime Minister. Most of whom have got away with it. A few are being prosecuted, but Richard Desmond is not being held to account for the poison he demanded was poured on the McCanns.

pofacedalways Fri 30-Nov-12 10:06:33

Yes agree Edam, refused on Channel 4 news to say who was funding the campaign. That is my only point, I find this of concern when trying to lobby to change the law through a popular sleb face.

But of course yes, the real instigators of this whole debacle, Murdoch and police and political figures , will not be held to account

pofacedalways Fri 30-Nov-12 10:12:09

there was a but missing there 'yes edam but'

edam Fri 30-Nov-12 10:16:29

Yes, it is important to know who is funding Hacked Off. You can't have a group exposing wrongdoing who are shady themselves about where their dosh comes from. I wonder why they won't say? Is it someone dodgy, or someone who fears exposure by the Murdoch press (which is surely more difficult for Murdoch's employees these days)?

PetiteRaleuse Fri 30-Nov-12 12:53:01

Ooh I didn't know there were questions about who funds Hacked Off. Interesting..

I can't stand HG in gneral but he has been an articulate spokesman for, in some cases, otherwise powerless victims. I also believe there hsould be some respect for slebs' private lives. Hounding them for stories just isn't fair.

The banks are a completely separate issue I don't see why they are being discussed here. Yes, there should be inquiries into banking practices. Eerone except bankers and politicians agree on that.

I think the recommendations Leveson made are good, as long as implemented with care as regards press freedom. I would agree however that Murdoch and Son have got off scot free, as have the politicians and their cosiness with the press. Cameron &friends must be pretty relieved. Te fact that LJL glosses over the Murdochs and the politicians does take away some of the credibility.

PetiteRaleuse Fri 30-Nov-12 12:55:16

Ooh forgot to mention how the police have also been glossed over.

I wouldn't query the independence of the inquiry, but I think LJL has been very, erm, kind, for want of a better word.

bunchamunchycrunchycarrots Fri 30-Nov-12 13:02:20

I'd guess Max Mosley is another who is funding Hacked Off. He's already said he'll fund anyone who wants to sue Murdoch/other press who have been involved in this. He tried to get more MPs to come forward re their treatment at the hands of the press, mainly to bolster his, and Hacked Off's, agenda.

edam Fri 30-Nov-12 13:06:48

Judges have a tendency to be respectful towards the PM (of the day, not just this one) - look at Hutton. And kind to the police - look at the judge-led inquiries into Hillsborough, both failed to uncover the truth.

I am sure they strive for independence but I do think being figures of authority themselves they tend to have a respect for authority and at heart a feeling of trust that those in authority don't tell huge lies when asked by a court of law. Hence Hutton covering up the weapons of mass destruction lies over Iraq and carefully not asking searching questions about the death of poor David Kelly. Mind you, Hutton's report was an obvious whitewash which bore no relation at all to the evidence. Leveson at least is a reasonable, if charitable towards the police and PM, interpretation of the evidence.

PetiteRaleuse Fri 30-Nov-12 13:11:45

Good point edam

Judges would have the assumption that everyone in positions of authority would respect the concept of perjury as they do themselves.

lovesmellingthecoffee Fri 30-Nov-12 15:02:57

What i don't understand is that many members of the press have been breaking laws which already exist and don't seem to be prosecuted for them.

Why have the police not been taken to task for a) not prosecuting criminals (which is what they are) and b) why isnt there a Jimmy Saville style investigation in to bribery and corruption in the police force around these issues,

Are the press barons so mighty that they and their workforce cannot be prosecuted?
Have the police been accepting bribes? or been coerced into non action.
Why have MPs from all parties let this happen?

Nancy66 Fri 30-Nov-12 15:11:01

dozens of journalists have been quizzed as part of the investigation. About 10 or so have been charged. Remember this particular enquiry only relates to a specific period of time.

There was also a separate enquiry into the conduct of the police which led to the resignation of John Yates

complexnumber Fri 30-Nov-12 16:16:54

I find it rather distasteful that Hugh Grant uses his celebrity status and influence to try to change the law on this issue when he clearly doesn't give a monkeys about the banks

How do you know? He has chosen to be very public about one particular cause, he may well have others. Why is this distasteful?

msrisotto Fri 30-Nov-12 17:27:36

He;s doing the cause a favour in helping it raise it's profile. There's nothing distasteful about it.

complexnumber Fri 30-Nov-12 17:54:06

msrisotto, I knew we would agree on something. Even if it wasn't fish!

complexnumber Fri 30-Nov-12 17:55:17

That should have been msrisotto , of course.

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