The Media in the Press

Alex McConnell, second-year journalism student at Strathclyde University, takes a look at the media stories making it in to today’s press…

As reported on, Culture Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, yesterday confirmed that pilot news services to replace ITV’s regional news in Scotland, Wales and Tyne-Tees/Border are to be scrapped. But, reminds The Scotsman, page 16 – he wants to “harness” the ideas of the media companies involved.

Labour had planned to create Independently-Funded News Consortia (IFNC), funded by the government and operating by the end of this year. Hunt's response was that they “risked turning a whole generation of media companies into subsidy junkies”. He also announced yesterday that broadcasting regulator, Ofcom, is to be asked to look at the case for removing all cross-media ownership rules at a local level and at options for supporting new local TV stations in towns and cities.

The Guardian website reports on changes within the senior editorial management at the Daily Mail, with Leaf Kalfayan becoming executive editor of features. As well as Kalfayan changing posts, Andrew Morrod moves from Femail to become assistant editor of features and Andrew Yates has been given the job of deputy features editor.

There is also speculation that Mail Online is to increase its flow of traffic-attracting celebrity stories by opening a Los Angeles bureau, due to the success of the website which topped 40 million unique browsers in April, the first UK newspaper website to do so.

Also says,uk, Sport magazine is to publish, this Friday, its biggest issue during its four-year history, marking a dramatic turnaround almost exactly a year after the loss-making free weekly title was bought by UTV Media. 

The bumper 96-page issue, a World Cup special, will feature Eric Cantona in a cover-wrap advertisement for a new deodorant from L'Oreal's Men Expert range and also features interviews with England goalkeeper David James, Argentinean striker Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. Umbro, Nike, Adidas, Nivea, are just some of the advertisers that have signed up so far

And finally, an amputee who was claiming severe disablement allowance has been jailed after he was spotted taking part in a 200-mile trek for a BBC documentary in 2005 – The Daily Telegraph, page 11.

Karl Sacks, who lost a part of his leg in a diving accident in 1995, completed a coast-to coast trek across Nicaragua for BBC Two documentary, Beyond Boundaries, despite receiving severe disabled allowance which is only paid to claimants who are “80 percent disabled”. He was jailed for ten weeks after admitting five counts of benefit fraud totalling more than £40,000.