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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

Birthday bash

The Telegraph removed its paywall for 25 hours last Wednesday as it celebrated 25 years of Telegraph.co.uk. The publication was the first European newspaper to launch a website, describing the move as a “watershed moment in media history”. It now brings in around 20 million total unique visitors per month, compared to 33.9 million for Sun Online, according to Comscore figures from July.
It is worth noting that on the day of the launch in 1994, the then editor Max Hastings told the board privately: “I do not believe that electronic publishing is going to supplant newsprint as a means of moving information to large readerships in our lifetimes.” How times have changed.

Labour vs Sky

Labour is launching a complaint to the broadcasting watchdog, Ofcom, about “the Brexit election” headline Sky News has chosen to run its election coverage under. Jeremy Corbyn’s party argues it breaches impartiality rules by supporting Boris Johnson’s pursuit to frame the election as a vote on EU withdrawal.

A Labour source told the HuffPost’s Deputy Political Editor Arj Singh: “This does the Tories’ work for them, effectively ensuring their Brexit election slogan is on screen and all over social media all day, every day.”

Big grey mush

The editor of the Daily Mirror, Alison Phillips, told the Society of Editors conference on Wednesday that there is a “terrible risk” of the Mirror, Express and Star brands becoming “blurred” and “a big grey mush”, which “would be the worst possible outcome for any of the news brands”. It follows the acquisition by Reach, which publishes the Mirror and Sunday People titles, of the Daily Express, Sunday Express, Daily Star and Daily Star on Sunday in February 2018 in a £127m deal.

Going green

In other Mirror news, the publication changed its masthead from the traditional red to green last week for a special edition on climate change. In an editorial, the paper said: “The Mirror believes the climate crisis is everybody’s crisis. But while there are plenty of reasons to despair, there is also cause to hope.” It went on to encourage readers to make small changes, from trying to walk more, to planting trees and reducing household waste.

TWEET OF THE WEEK

MEDIA MOVES

Tanveer Mann has been appointed Deputy News Editor at the Daily Mirror. Meanwhile, Georgia Diebelius is joining the publication as an Assistant News Editor.

Natasha Bernal has been appointed Business Editor at Wired UK. She was previously a Technology Intelligence Reporter at The Daily Telegraph.

Dave Lee is joining the FT in San Francisco focusing on Amazon and e-commerce. He is currently a Technology Reporter for the BBC covering Silicon Valley.

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