Lord Leveson: The state cannot license journalists

Lord Justice Leveson has said that he is against state controls on journalism and that he is keen that any new regulator remains ‘independent”.

He said: “I would be very surprised if government regulation ever even entered my own mind.”

Responding to a suggestion from Independent editor Christ Blackhurst that any new journalism industry regulator might have the power to ban journalists from practising, Leveson said: ‘The state can say who is entitled to practice as a doctor, lawyer…or whatever…but it’s a fundamental of freedom of expression that what you are doing when you are writing something down is you are doing no more than exercising your right to freedom of speech.”

Blackhurst said he was very worried that as a result of the recommendations made by Leveson ‘our ability as an industry to investigate will be curtailed”.

Leveson replied that he was eager to ensure that he did nothing which ‘impacts adversely on appropriate journalism”. He added: ‘There certainly have been some practices which are not entirely legitimate and it’s not just phone-hacking.”

Leveson said that one of the things he is concerned about is the ‘extent to which the press investigates the press”. To whcih Blackhurst admitted that there has been a “code” in place where newspapers have been reluctant to write about each other.



Our free daily round-up of the biggest news about the world of news

No comments to display

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *