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Welcome to Lexington’s weekly round-up of media news and the latest moves in journalism.

Media News

It’s all about trust

  • Readers are nearly four times more likely to trust a report in a local paper than information published on Facebook, research by YouGov has revealed. Three-quarters of those surveyed said they trust the news in their local paper, whether reading online or in print.  Television stations and commercial radio are just behind at 73 per cent. In comparison, just 22 per cent said they trust the news and information they see on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter.  For the full results, see here.

Read all about it – the end of press regulation?

  • The Leveson inquiry into the relationships between newspapers, police and politicians is closed and the second stage will not proceed. ‘We do not believe that reopening this costly and time-consuming public inquiry is the right way forward,’ Culture Secretary Matt Hancock told the House of Commons, adding that the years since the initial inquiry have seen ‘seismic change’ in the media landscape. So, is that really case closed? Not quite, Lexington’s Claire Ogley writes in her analysis of the news. Read it here.

Global health security

  • The Telegraph has a new section focusing on global health security, which is being partially funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The publication says it will retain editorial independence, with reports focusing on issues including communicable diseases such as Ebola and new strains of influenza, as well as obesity, antibiotic resistance and the growing threat of bioterrorism.

Paid content at the New Statesman

  • The New Statesman is to start charging readers for online access. In a blog, editor Jason Cowley said the decision was so people could support ‘authoritative, elegantly written, and independent journalism at a time when it has never been more needed’. The metered pay wall will start later this month, with readers still receiving limited access for free.

Home entertainment beats the printed world

  • Consumers are spending more on home entertainment products than books, magazines and newspapers for the first time, a report by the Entertainment Retailers Association has found. A record £7.2 billion was spent last year on products including DVDs, consoles and streaming services, while £7.1bn was spent by consumers on the ‘printed world’. Read the Guardian’s take on the story here.

Regional differences

  • The Yorkshire Evening Post was the regional daily with the steepest circulation decline in the last six months of 2017, the latest ABC figures show. The paper was down 29 per cent on the same period in 2016, with circulation falling to 11,494. It wasn’t all bad news for local papers, though. Titles including the London Evening Standard, The Scotsman and the Wigan Post all reported circulation increases. Separately, the Midland News Association last week launched a new paid-for weekly title, the Shropshire Weekly, for people who ‘no longer feel they have time’ for a daily read.

Comment of the Week

Media Moves

All change

  • It’s all change at the Daily Star and Daily Express, where both editors have announced they are leaving. Express editor Hugh Whittow is to retire with former Sunday Mirror editor Gary Jones taking his place. Star editor Dawn Neesom is leaving to pursue freelance and broadcast work, with the Daily Mirror’s associate editor Jon Clark replacing her. It comes after Trinity Mirror completed its purchase of the two papers from Richard Desmond’s Northern & Shell. Read the Press Gazette’s full report here.

If your organisation needs communications advice, or you would like more information about how Lexington’s team of media experts can support you, please contact caroline.nagle@lexcomm.co.uk.

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