Monthly Archives: October 2010

British newspaper front pages review at midnight: Thursday 28 October 2010

Tonight’s papers are relatively poor, all falling back onto familiar territory in the absence of a real story. The Guardian picks up a story from a few weeks ago, the Telegraph goes with the weakness of the legal system and The Times rants about the cost of Europe. A slow night by all accounts.

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Front pages review at midnight: Wednesday 27 October 2010

 Two hours late with my review tonight, apologies guys. It is a relatively slow news day but gives us the chance to see that rarest of things – a good news front page splash. The Times decides that the economic figures are good enough that it doesn’t need to apply its usual cynical approach and takes a positive line. The Telegraph, however, has a better version of the same story and you can’t help thinking that there is a reason why most newspapers don’t have good news on the front pages…

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Blogging and the death of the Renaissance man

Think of the ideal blogger as a bit like Leonardo Da Vinci.  Leonarda Da Vinci was, among other things, a painter, a sculptor, an architect, a musician, a scientist, an engineer, an inventor and a writer. A great blogger should aim to become Da Vinci – to use the creative commons of the internet to improve his or her knowledge on a vast range of subjects and to provoke debate on those subjects.

But the vast majority of blogs, and I include this blog in this list, fall so far short of this ideal. They do so because the structure, and sheer number, of blogs means that it is hard to claim authority over more than one area of expertise.

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British newspaper front pages review at midnight: Tuesday 26 October 2010

A good night for the broadsheets with both the Guardian and The Times splashing with strong, well-researched stories and the FT having a good report on today’s negotiations between the UK and Switzerland.

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British newspaper front pages review at midnight: Monday 25 October 2010

A quiet day at the start of a quiet week in British news, by the looks of things. 5 different top stories, none of them particularly great.

The Times – ‘CBI warns on jobs as recovery loses steam’ – leads with David Cameron’s upcoming address to the CBI annual conference in which he will “attempt to assure industry by claiming that the coalition can generate investment in industry.” The Times will presumably have been given snippets of the speech by Number 10’s press office and has tried to make it more interesting by focussing on the warnings about the cuts from Richard Lambert, head of the CBI. While it is top-down journalism, it at least does a decent job of setting the scene for the week.

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Front pages review: Saturday 23rd October 2010

The much awaited Wikileaks war docs are out today, and The Guardian has them and so is probably be the best place to start.

The Guardian – “See no evil: secret files show how US ignored Iraq torture” – has the undoubted scoop of the day, even though we all knew it was coming. They have, through Wikileaks, published the Iraq war documents (they published the Afghan war ones several months ago in amid controversy). These documents appear to tell us little we didn’t already know (that Americans abused prisoners has been widely documented) but the scale is scary. Normally I am critical of papers if they don’t add anything to the primary source (the document) but in this case it is so powerful and it’s a scoop so they should push it. Nick Davies, the man behind the NOTW case, writes the story well. P.s. Have a look at this Iraq war video on their website

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Front pages review: Friday 22nd October 2010

Firstly apologies I didn’t do this last night. It won’t happen again. Anyway today’s papers are mostly still following the fall-out from the CSR, with the majority focussing on the IFS report criticising the fairness of the budget.

The Guardian and The Telegraph lead with the IFS’ criticism of the fairness of the Comprehensive Spending Review. The Guardian says the IFS ‘flatly contradicts ’ Osborne’s claims that the budget is fair to the poor. For me, this is a little weak as a story.  The ISF is a strong source but both stories are basically like a re-written press release of their findings. The Gurdian has a rather laborious quote from the IFS’ acting director Carl Emmerson (“the tax and benefit consolidation are, overall, being implemented in a regressive way”) and from Angela Eagle speaking in parliament, but there is no comment from the government and little real analysis. The Telegraph has even less that wasn’t in the IFS report.

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Front pages review: Thursday 21 October 2010

As with yesterday the Comprehensive Spending Review is the only game in town and subsequently it is a little hard to discuss the paper’s choice of sources. They almost exclusively use the CSR document and George Osborne’s speech as the base of their articles and many just summarise Wednesday’s announcements. What is interesting, however, is how they use the same data and speech to appeal to their audiences and breathe life into a dead story.

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Front pages review: Wednesday 20th October 2010

Tomorrow’s papers are all taking slightly different angle on the only real news story of the day, the long-awaited Comprehensive Spending Review.

Yet again The Telegraph and The Times have very similar scoops, right down to the titles. The Telegraph has “500,000 public sector jobs to go”, while The Times takes a very different angle with “500,000 jobs to go on ‘hard road’ ahead. A better angle would almost certainly have been to go with the “One in twelve public sector jobs to go” if they were worried about originality.

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Front pages review: Tuesday 19 October 2010

The story of Tuesday’s papers is about positioning for the Comprehensive Spending Review, and the issue of defence dominates all but one of the papers.

The Financial Times and The Guardian both splash with what will probably be the lead story tomorrow, that the government will delay renewing Trident by between three and five years. This would be, for Lib Dems, a relatively big coup if they got it through. The Guardian’s headline “Cameron to delay Trident replacement” is less immediately catchy than the FT’s “Trident to be delayed by up to five years”

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