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Saturday, October 4, 2014

Leveson has changed nothing – the media still put ‘stories’ before the truth | Gerry McCann | Comment is free | The Guardian

Leveson has changed nothing – the media still put ‘stories’ before the truth | Gerry McCann | Comment is free | The Guardian


Leveson has changed nothing– the media still put ‘stories’
before the truth
As I know from experience, if papers
tell lies about you, they’ll be able to get away with it pretty much scot free.
The public backs change – and editors must act
As I know from experience, if papers
tell lies about you, they’ll be able to get away with it pretty much scot free.
The public backs change – and editors must act
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/oct/02/leveson-gerry-mccann-media-stories-before-truthThe Guardian, Thursday 2
October 2014 19.14 BST K
Kate and Gerry McCann talking to the
press earlier this year during a libel case against a former Portuguese police
officer. ‘Newspapers treat the people they write about as if they don’t exist.
Wild animals are given more respect.’ Photograph: Mario Cruz/EPA

Nearly three years ago my wife,
Kate, and I appeared before the Leveson inquiry to talk about the campaign of
lies that was waged against us after our daughter Madeleine went missing. We
described how our lives had been turned into a soap opera so that newspapers
could make money, with no regard for truth, for the distress they were
inflicting, or for the damage caused to the search for Madeleine. We asked Lord
Justice Leveson to ensure that in future things would be different and that
nobody would ever again have to endure the dishonest reporting we experienced,
or at least that there would be some quick, effective way of correcting false
reports in newspapers.

Nothing has changed since then. Big
newspaper companies continue to put sales and profit before truth. The
protection for ordinary people is as feeble as it always was.
A year ago, when Kate and I were
experiencing a time of renewed hope as the Metropolitan police stepped up its
new investigation into Madeleine’s disappearance, we received an email late on
a Thursday night from the Sunday Times. Its reporter asked us to comment on
information he planned to publish. This turned out to be a claim that for five
years Kate, I and the directors of Madeleine’s
Fund
withheld crucial evidence about Madeleine’s disappearance. We rushed
to meet his deadline for a response. In the vain hope that the Sunday Times
would not publish such a clearly damaging and untrue story, we sent a statement
to the newspaper. We denied the main tenet of the story and emphasised that
since Madeleine’s disappearance we had fully cooperated with the police and
that the directors of Madeleine’s Fund had always acted in her best interest.

However, the Sunday Times went ahead
and published the report on its front page, largely ignoring our statement. We
tried to settle this matter quickly and without legal action. I wrote to the
editor asking for a correction, but all we got in response was an offer to
publish a “clarification” and tweak a few lines of the article – but still to continue
to publish it on the newspaper’s website. Indeed, further correspondence from
the paper only aggravated the distress the original article had caused, created
a huge volume of work and forced us to issue a formal complaint to get redress
through our lawyers.

Eventually, two months after the
article was published, a correction was printed, retracting all the allegations
and apologising. But even then – and despite the grotesque nature of what it
had falsely alleged on its front page – the apology was on an inside page and
the word “apology” was absent from the headline. Since then, it has taken 11
months and the filing of a legal claim to get the Sunday Times to agree to
damages, all of which we are donating to charity, and to get our right to tell
the public that we had won the case. But the cost to the paper is peanuts – the
fee for a single advertisement will probably cover it. And there will be no
consequences for anyone working there.

Nothing will be done to ensure that
in future reporters and editors try harder to get things right. And so the same
people will do something similar, soon, to some other unfortunate family – who
will probably not have our hard-earned experience of dealing with these things
and who will probably never succeed in getting a correction or an apology.
So what has changed in the newspaper
industry since the Leveson report two years ago? Absolutely nothing. Newspapers
continue to put “stories” before the truth, and without much care for the
victims.

They treat the people they write
about as if they don’t exist. Wild animals are given more respect. They hide
behind talk about the rights of the press while they routinely trash the rights
of ordinary people. They constantly claim to stand up to the powerful, but they
are the ones with the power, and they use it ruthlessly.

Legal action should be a last
resort. A final route when all else has failed. I don’t blame Leveson. He
recommended changes that would make a big difference. He wanted a press
self-regulator that was not controlled by the big newspaper companies and that
had real clout. If a paper told lies about you, you could go to this body and
count on fast and fair treatment: it would not just let papers off the hook.
More than that, Leveson wanted a cheap, quick arbitration service so that
ordinary people did not need to resort to the law. Our experience shows this is
a vital reform.

Parliament backed Leveson’s plan.
The public backs it. So do we, and almost all the other victims who gave
evidence to Leveson. Only one group of people is opposing this change – the
perpetrators themselves, the same editors and newspaper owners who were
responsible for all that cruelty. Instead of accepting the Leveson plan, these
people, including the owner of the Sunday Times, have set up another sham
regulator called Ipso,
which is designed to do their bidding just like the old, disgraced Press Complaints Commission.

If in another year’s time the press
still rejects the royal charter – itself already a compromise – then it will be
time for parliament to deliver on the promises the party leaders made, and
ensure that what Leveson recommended is actually delivered. Otherwise elements
of the press will go on treating people with total contempt. This time, once
again, it was Kate and I who were the targets. Next time it could be you.

 Comment:

When press people particularly women hooks the
top politicians and even presidents and PM and allows sexual performance with
them used by filthy motive as strategy for its safety that happened with Murdoch’s
print media under the watch of David Cameron PM’S regime . What could any human
do? As such is practiced by BBC, CNN AND MANY OTHERS.


THERE IS NOTHING ONE CAN DO THAN TO GET FUCKED
BY THE POODLES OF THE SUPPER POWERS .


THE MOST EFFECTIVE NOW ARE MURDIOCK HIMSELF FOR
DAVID CAMARON AND NETANYAHU FOR ALL US ZIONIST LAWMAKERS CONTROLLING AMERICA.


THE LEAST ONE CAN IS TO LAMENT AND CRY TO
HEART'S CONTENT





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