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Phone-hacking: is it time to get tough on the press?


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Speaker(s): David Aaronovitch, Charlotte Harris, Martin Moore, Paul Staines
Chair: Charlie Beckett

Recorded on 13 July 2011 in Old Theatre, Old Building.

The furore around the phone-hacking scandal at the News of the World has raised wider issues around the regulation and standards of British newspaper journalism. Is it time for the authorities to get tough on the press or would that threaten freedom of expression and the media's ability to hold power to account?

David Aaronovitch is a writer, broadcaster and commentator on culture, international affairs, politics and the media. A former television researcher, producer and programme editor, he has previously written for The Independent, The Guardian and The Observer, winning numerous accolades, including Columnist of the Year 2003 and the 2001 Orwell prize for journalism. He currently writes for The Times. He has appeared on the satirical TV current affairs programme Have I Got News For You, presented a number of radio and television series and programmes on current affairs and historical topics. His first book, and account of a journey by kayak on the rivers and canals of England, Paddling to Jerusalem, was published in 2000 and won the Madoc Prize for travel writing. In 2009 he published Voodoo Histories, a book on the history and attraction of conspiracy theories, which he spoke about in a POLIS public lecture at LSE, a podcast of the lecture is available.

Charlotte Harris is a partner in Mishcon Private. Charlotte has been fundamental in the exposure of the phone hacking scandal and continues to act for many clients in relation to this issue. Recent notable cases include Max Clifford v NGN and Glenn Mulcaire, Donald v N'tuli (C of A) and Perroncel v NGN.

Martin Moore is director of the Media Standards Trust, a new independent charity that looks for ways to foster high standards in news.

Paul Staines is the author of Guido Fawkes' blog.

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