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The opinions expressed on this page are mine alone. Any similarities to the views of my employer are completely coincidental.

Friday, 6 June 2014

ABCD trial

And while we are on the topic of the Guardian, why has the secret ABCD trial scandal disappeared from the headlines? Sure if you hunt around the web site  and click a few links you can find comment from Owen Jones and Simon Jenkins - in both cases readers' comments are disabled "for legal reasons" - but what about on the front page? 

One reading of it is that the following stories are more important than one of the most serious infringements of our civil liberties for centuries: Obama: US wants Scotland in UK; Osborne admits house price threat (big surprise there); Pope Francis defends Gypsies; Let British cities grow, says Labour; Africa: phone net use 'to rise 20-fold'; Race to contain new strain of malaria; A year on a Herefordshire farm.

I'm sure these are great stories and entirely worthy of our attention, but as important as a trial held in secret which, if it wasn't for legal challenge the press would not be allowed even to mention? One has to wonder: are there legal restraints on reporting  - a DA notice? Or is the press just being leaned on more informally by the boys from Vauxhall?

Time to get those old Glasgow Media Group volumes out of storage and remind yourself that we have the freest press in the world, except for when someone  - in the public interest of course - decides that freedom is inconvenient.

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