The Media in the Press 23.11.09

Katie Price (aka Jordan) has left I’m a Celebrity – Get me Out of Here! and the singing twins, ‘Jedward’, have been voted off X Factor. But there are, thankfully, other media tales in the press today, to get one’s teeth into….

Given particular prominence in both the Scottish Daily Express (page 20) and the Scottish Daily Mail (page 21) are claims by an ITV presenter that one of her colleagues racially mimicked the accent of her colleague, Sir Trevor McDonald.

Liza Aziz is suing ITV for £5 million on race, gender and age grounds. The story also appears in various other papers, including the Scottish Sun (page 22).

Elsewhere, the Daily Record publishes (on page 9) a short feature about BBC Radio Scotland news presenter, Aasmah Mir. Apparently, when she was 21 – over 15 years ago – she had the chance to be a news presenter on STV, but quit after two weeks.

And in The Scotsman (page 33), the new ITV chair, Archie Norman, is believed to be mulling over whether to charge people for watching digital channels, ITV2, ITV3 and ITV4 – which are currently available for free on Freeview. The story also appears on page 22 of The Herald.

Talking of charging, The Independent’s media section today carries a large article by Ian Burrell about newspapers charging for online content.

He quotes James Murdoch, chief executive of News Corp Europe and Asia, saying on Thursday: “We are actually going to be charging a premium price. Okay, we will have a smaller audience than giving it away for free, but I think it’s the crucial step in starting to develop a wholesale market in digital journalism, which is what we are keen to do and what everyone will be keen to do over time.”

That’s The Times, Sunday Times, Sun and News of the World, etc.

It’s a comprehensive review of who is doing what and well worth a read.

And Monday is also The Guardian’s day for extensive coverage of the media. Its ten-page supplement splashes with an interview with Culture Secretary, Ben Bradshaw, in the wake of the publication of the Digital Economy Bill, which among things, proposes a publicly-funded news pilot on Channel 3 for Scotland, from next year.

And finally, Herald columnist, Ron Ferguson, takes a pop at A History of Scotland on BBC1 (“dodgy graphics, dodgy hairstyles and, some have argued, dodgy history”), while describing the BBC4 series, A History of Christianity, as “television for grown-ups”.