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Re: Piers Morgan and NOTW

Just following up on Nat’s post and the increased focus on what went on with Piers Morgan, here’s Morgan sympathetic take on the whole matter:

PIERS MORGAN: I have a lot of sympathy for the people at the top, because I don’t think they had a clue what was going on. And I think that it’s one of those situations where until you know exactly what the scale of the problem is, it’s very hard to deal with it.

[crosstalk]

MORGAN: But what I do find stomach-turning was your mate Hugh Grant on here the other day, a guy who’s used the media — this is my problem with all the phone hacking victims, they’ve all used the media over the years to feather their nests, buy their houses, flock their movies, sell out their concerts, and now they’re squealing like little pigs over the media and, you know, I just think it’s perspective time again.

The Guardian is leading the charge on phone hacking, they believe it’s wrong for any newspaper to publish material that has been gained unlawfully and yet The Guardian was the newspaper that published WikiLeaks, which is openly an illegal form of material that’s been acquired illegally, that was very dangerous to many parts of the security services and the armed forces. They knew that and willfully published it, and their argument is well it was all in the public’s interest. Really? Colonel Gaddafi’s lovers, which was one of the WikiLeaks revelations, that’s in the public interest?

There is no difference, it is sanctimonious, hypocritical bilge by The Guardian, by the BBC, sorry but they piled in too, by these stars like Hugh Grant — the BBC, and by experience when I was a newspaper editor — you break a big juicy story, a big ol’ scandal, and then what would happen is The Guardian and the BBC the next day would say there are disgusting revelations in The Daily Mirror or News of the World today so repellant that we are now going to talk about them for the next 20 minutes and in the case of The Guardian we’re going to run 17 pages on it. You can’t have your cake and eat it. If the BBC and The Guardian feel so strongly about this [unintelligible] kind of journalism, they should never cover it again.

He does make some valid points regarding the hypocrisy of media sources printing what NOTW reported first, but, as with WikiLeaks, this does not indemnify the party who actually participated in obtaining the information illegally.

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