Back Issues 11.11.03 - Press Gazette

Back Issues 11.11.03


A judge had controversially ruled that Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) was meaningless and had “no place in the medical books”. Judge John Prosser accepted the evidence of Reuters’ medical experts and dismissed a claim by sub-editor Rafiq Mughal against the news agency. He had sued Reuters for £85,000 for loss of earnings, and pain and suffering after, he claimed, he had developed RSI by working on a keyboard.


Women in the media were still failing to break through the “glass ceiling” and nab the top jobs. A meeting of 200 women heard claims that the media industry was misogynist and operated a “pernicious” male network which stopped women becoming editors and directors. Jane Reed, director of corporate relations at News International, predicted that the total of three editing jobs on the nationals held by women in 1993 was unlikely to rise to 10 by the year 2000. She was right. At the moment there are only two, Rebekah Wade on The Sun and Tina Weaver on the Sunday Mirror.


Sir Richard Storey, chairman of Portsmouth and Sunderland Newspapers, criticised regional newspapers for “being devoid of inspiration, magic or flair”. He argued that declining sales were down to poor quality of editorial content. Storey accused regional papers of a lack of objectivity and a failure to give the public balanced information.


Clare Henderson of the Grimsby Evening Telegraph was in London picking up the scoop of the year award for her exclusive that Norman Lamont was to resign as Chancellor. She got the newsfrom Lamont’s mum, who livedin Grimsby. Just to show the scoop wasn’t a fluke, the Evening Telegraph did it again. Editor Peter Moore, in London for the awards ceremony, was able to break the news that England manager Graham Taylor had quit. Taylor’s dad was a former sports journalists on the Grimsby Evening Telegraph’s sister newspaper in Scunthorpe. A local connection on a national story had come up trumps for the second time in a year.


Daily Mirror editor David Banks was defending his decision to publish pictures of Princess Diana snapped in a gym by a hidden camera. The Mirror and the Sunday Mirror had been castigated by the rest of the press and criticised by the Press Complaints Commission chairman Lord McGregor. But Banks, writing in Press Gazette,argued: “The photographs, neither distasteful noroffensive but flattering and beautiful, were taken some months ago, without collusion or inducement from Mirror Group Newspapers, by the owner of a
gymnasium.” He argued that a gym could not be classed as a private place.


A book of classic Sun headlines was being published ready for the Christmas market. Naturally, it was called Gotcha and included another famous headline from the Falklands conflict: “Stick it Up Your Junta.” One of the best was “Not In Here, I’m on the Throne” above the story that the Queen was going to open Buckingham Palace to the public. Editor Kelvin MacKenzie in a foreward wrote: “On The Sun we don’t pull punches. That’s why so many people swear by us and a few others swear at us. But no one ignores us.”


Dog couldn’t resist featuring this classic Sun headline that was too late for the Christmas book.