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Nov 28, 2012

Day of reckoning for Cameron and British press

LONDON (Reuters) – Prime Minister David Cameron faces a no-win dilemma on Thursday when a far-reaching inquiry into British newspapers delivers its verdict on how to curb the excesses of the country’s notoriously aggressive press.

Cameron, who was embarrassed when details of his personal links to Rupert Murdoch and his media empire emerged at the inquiry, will have to decide whether to accept its findings, which risk dividing his coalition government and angering an already hostile press.

Nov 27, 2012

BBC chief defends director general’s “hell of a” pay-off

LONDON, Nov 27 (Reuters) – The head of the BBC’s governing
body defended paying a “hell of a lot of money” to the
corporation’s ex-boss on Tuesday and said the cost of two
inquiries into the causes of his departure would have to come
from its publicly-funded coffers.

Director general George Entwistle came under fire for the
BBC’s slow and unconvincing response to revelations a former
star presenter, the late Jimmy Savile, was a serial paedophile,
and for a programme featuring false sex abuse allegations.

Nov 22, 2012

Cameron in crossfire when press inquiry reports

LONDON (Reuters) – After a year-long public inquiry exposed the worst excesses of Britain’s raucous newspapers, the press is battling to avoid any proposals for tougher regulation next week, and Prime Minister David Cameron will come under fire whatever he decides.

Senior judge Brian Leveson is set to announce by the end of November the findings of his dissection of the industry, which was prompted by a phone-hacking scandal at Rupert Murdoch’s News of the World Sunday, a News Corp tabloid the media tycoon then shut down.

Nov 12, 2012

BBC head says broadcaster must reform or die

LONDON, Nov 12 (Reuters) – Britain’s BBC could be doomed
unless it makes radical changes, the head of its governing trust
said, after its director general quit to take the blame for the
airing of false child sex abuse allegations against a former
politician.

BBC Trust chairman Chris Patten said on Sunday confidence
had to be restored if the publicly funded corporation was to
withstand pressure from rivals, especially Rupert Murdoch’s
media empire, which would try to take advantage of the turmoil.

Nov 11, 2012

BBC must reform or face uncertain future, says chairman

LONDON, Nov 11 (Reuters) – Britain’s BBC must undergo a
radical overhaul in the wake of “shoddy” journalism which led to
the resignation of its chief or its future will be in doubt, the
head of the state-funded broadcaster’s governing body said on
Sunday.

Chris Patten, chairman of the BBC Trust, said opponents of
the BBC, especially Rupert Murdoch’s media empire, would take
advantage of the turmoil to up the pressure on its long-term
rival.

Nov 11, 2012

Head of beleaguered BBC quits to try to restore trust

LONDON, Nov 11 (Reuters) – BBC director general George
Entwistle has resigned just two months into the job, after the
state-funded broadcaster aired mistaken allegations of child sex
abuse against a former leading politician.

The BBC was already reeling from revelations that a
long-time star presenter had been a paedophile, and the
conspicuous failure to apply normal journalistic standards was
the last thing it needed.

Nov 11, 2012

BBC chief quits after “shoddy journalism” failures

LONDON (Reuters) – BBC Director General George Entwistle resigned on Saturday, just two months into the job, after the state-funded broadcaster put out a program denounced by its chairman as shoddy journalism.

The BBC, reeling from revelations that a former star presenter was a paedophile, brought further problems on its head when a flagship news program, Newsnight, aired a mistaken allegation that a former top politician sexually abused children.

Nov 10, 2012

BBC director general resigns over “shoddy journalism”

LONDON, Nov 10 (Reuters) – BBC Director General George
Entwistle resigned on Saturday, just two months into the job,
after the state-funded broadcaster put out a programme denounced
by the corporation’s chairman as shoddy journalism.

The BBC, reeling from revelations that one of its former
stars was a paedophile, brought further problems on its head
when a flagship news programme aired a mistaken allegation that
a former senior politician sexually abused children.

Nov 10, 2012

BBC under fire again after false child sex abuse report

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s public broadcaster, reeling from revelations that one of its former stars was a pedophile, was struggling to contain damage on Saturday after a flagship news program aired a mistaken allegation that an ex-politician sexually abused children.

The BBC had already issued a full apology on Friday, but on Saturday its director general had to admit under questioning from his own journalists that he had not known in advance about the Newsnight report, weeks after being accused of being too hands-off over the previous scandal on the same program.

Nov 9, 2012

UK sex abuse victim apologizes to Thatcher party treasurer

LONDON (Reuters) – A child rape victim apologised on Friday to an ally of former prime minister Margaret Thatcher who had been falsely identified on the Internet as his abuser, after days of furious speculation of a high-level paedophile ring in Britain.

Steven Messham, who had told the BBC he had been repeatedly sexually abused as a child in social care by a leading political figure in the late 1970s, said former Conservative Party treasurer Lord Alistair McAlpine was not among his attackers.