Daily Echo is among the ‘gold standard’ of press

Chairman of the PCC Lord Hunt with Daily Echo editor Ian Murray during his visit to the Echo newsroom

Chairman of the PCC Lord Hunt with Daily Echo editor Ian Murray during his visit to the Echo newsroom

First published in News Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Politics and business reporter

IT’S a year to the week since Lord David Hunt took over as chairman of the Press Complaints Commission in the wake of the phone hacking scandal.

But as a Government inquiry prepares to publish proposals on the future of press regulation and governance, Lord Hunt told the Daily Echo he believes revamped self-regulation is the way forward to preserve a free press.

Lord Hunt has spent the past year touring the country’s regional and local newspapers and has found a “vibrant industry” which he said represents the “gold standard” of a free press.

He acknowledged there had been a “serious loss of confidence and trust as a result of the activities of a small minority, particularly with phone hacking” but said people largely trusted their local and regional newspapers.

The former Tory Cabinet minister said: “In my experience as an MP for 21 years the local and regional press represents the gold standard of everything you would want to see in a free press.

“It mirrors the local community, speaks out on behalf of the local community and excites debate about what should and should not happen. It’s the life-blood of the local community.”
Lord Hunt readily admits the PCC, which he chairs and is to be abolished, has “no teeth”, calling it a “complaint handling organisation”.

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But he has warned a statutory system of regulation would be too inflexible and unable to adapt to the changing new digital world, amounting to a “straitjacket” on the press.
Lord Hunt is championing a “new regulator with teeth” that would uphold the rights of the individual and the freedom of the press.

He has proposed a new self-regulation system based around contract law, which he says would legally bind publishers to follow a code of ethics, and allow a new standards board to launch investigations and levy potentially heavy fines for breaches of the code.

He says he has got the agreement of all the major newspaper publishers, and websites such as Huffington Post and Conservative Home, to launch the new regulator.

Lord Justice Leveson, who is chairing the inquiry into the culture, practice and ethics                  of the press, will make his recommendations to the Government by the end of the year.

Comments (9)

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3:01pm Mon 22 Oct 12

ToastyTea says...

Daily Echo, 'gold standard' ? you gota laugh.
Daily Echo, 'gold standard' ? you gota laugh. ToastyTea
  • Score: 0

5:14pm Mon 22 Oct 12

Big Mac says...

Ho, ho, ho.
Ho, ho, ho. Big Mac
  • Score: 0

6:01pm Mon 22 Oct 12

Huffter says...

?
? Huffter
  • Score: 0

7:14pm Mon 22 Oct 12

cantthinkofone says...

ROFLMAO.
ROFLMAO. cantthinkofone
  • Score: 0

8:16pm Mon 22 Oct 12

G0Rf says...

Is this website compatible with IE 6 / 7 / 8 ?

It only works for me on IE 9.

Seems the spell check in the daily echo offices dont work though!
Is this website compatible with IE 6 / 7 / 8 ? It only works for me on IE 9. Seems the spell check in the daily echo offices dont work though! G0Rf
  • Score: 0

8:20pm Mon 22 Oct 12

huckit P says...

Crikey! It makes you wonder how bad the others are!
Crikey! It makes you wonder how bad the others are! huckit P
  • Score: 0

8:44pm Mon 22 Oct 12

FoysCornerBoy says...

And its so reassuring to have a ringing endorsement for a free local press from a former Tory cabinet minister. I'll need to think long and hard before making a complaint of political bias against the Echo to his Press Complaints Commission.
And its so reassuring to have a ringing endorsement for a free local press from a former Tory cabinet minister. I'll need to think long and hard before making a complaint of political bias against the Echo to his Press Complaints Commission. FoysCornerBoy
  • Score: 0

8:37am Tue 23 Oct 12

Taskforce 141 says...

HAHAHAHAHA

Echo - Gold Standard! HAHAHAHA, I'm crying I'm laughing so much.

It was a nice twist of the words Echo...
"local and regional press represents the gold standard"
This does not mean you Echo, it means generally speaking, surely your employees understand grammar?...
HAHAHAHAHA Echo - Gold Standard! HAHAHAHA, I'm crying I'm laughing so much. It was a nice twist of the words Echo... "local and regional press represents the gold standard" This does not mean you Echo, it means generally speaking, surely your employees understand grammar?... Taskforce 141
  • Score: 0

11:11am Tue 23 Oct 12

bazzeroz says...

Best laugh I've had for ages! Best laugh I've had for ages! Cor blimey, is there an echo in here?
Best laugh I've had for ages! Best laugh I've had for ages! Cor blimey, is there an echo in here? bazzeroz
  • Score: 0

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