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Welcome to Lexington’s weekly round-up of media news and the latest moves in journalism. To subscribe please email communications@lexcomm.co.uk. 

MEDIA NEWS

Access denied

Paywalls are becoming more popular, but most news access remains free. That’s according to new research by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism which found that more than two-thirds (68%) of newspapers across seven countries in the EU and US are operating ‘some kind of paywall’. The average monthly subscription price is £12.21, with the Financial Times being the most expensive. On average, the UK charges the most for newspapers (£15.12 per month) among the countries featured, but has the lowest proportion of titles that charge fees.

No Change (UK) here

Friday’s episode of the BBC One’s Have I Got News for You was pulled because it risked impinging on broadcast guidelines around the upcoming European Parliament elections. Change UK’s leader Heidi Allen had been booked as a guest, but the BBC said that her appearance risked flouting balance rules in the run up to the elections. Change UK has written to director general Lord Tony Hall demanding that the BBC urgently reviews its coverage of the party after the episode was pulled and the party was barred from a BBC Wales candidates’ debate. Questions have been raised as Heidi Allen isn’t standing as an MEP candidate and the Brexit Party’s Nigel Farage was a panellist on Thursday’s Question Time.

Speaking of Farage, the Mirror has fact-checked everything the Brexit Party leader said on Sunday’s episode of The Andrew Marr Show.

It really does matter

The News Media Association today launches its weeklong Journalism Matters campaign to ‘boldly and unashamedly champion journalism as a force for good in our society’. The campaign encourages newspapers across the country to explain to readers the ‘importance of trusted journalism to our democratic society’, a call which has already been answered by titles such as The Courier, The Press and Journal, and the Hereford Times, amongst others. 16 May will see local papers using the #TrustedNewsDay hashtag to show readers how quality news is produced.

Chop it up

Facebook’s new head of global affairs Nick Clegg has hit back at demands that the platform is broken up. Facebook’s co-founder Chris Hughes last week published a column in the New York Times criticising Mark Zuckerberg and calling for the company to be broken up, a sentiment that has been echoed by US presidential hopeful Kamala Harris. Speaking yesterday to CNN, Clegg said that data use, privacy and election interference were ‘complex issues’ but ‘chopping a great American success story into bits is not something that’s going to make those problems go away’.

SPOTLIGHT ON DIGITAL

 

MEDIA MOVES

Charlotte Lytton is now senior commissioning editor and special correspondent at The Telegraph.

Huw Oliver has been appointed commissioning editor for EMEA at TimeOut magazine.

Caroline Barrett has been appointed editor of The Sunday Telegraph’s Stella magazine.

Donato Paolo Mancini has joined the Financial Times in London to cover corporate news.

COMMENT OF THE WEEK

 

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