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Blighty ranks 38th in World Press Freedom Index

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There's a method certainly

But I think they could have made how they calculate the scores a little clearer. A worked example would be nice.

So would seeing how they aggregate scores from questionnaires and how they reached the weightings for each item too.

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*China* is ahead

FFS

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Re: *China* is ahead

"...followed by The Netherlands, Norway, Denmark and New Zealand. China, Syria, Turkmenistan, North Korea and Eritrea prop up the table."

I missed the full stop after New Zealand on the first read as well....

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Re: *China* is ahead

I'm surprised to see North Korea comes out ahead of Eritrea though. I'd have thought they'd be bottom of the pile - given there's not even the opportunity for journalists to print disobliging things about the government. And they'd much more likely be shot, than imprisoned too. If not them and their whole families being sent to the gulags.

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Re: *China* is ahead

@TimR

Me too. I went to the rsf site and looked just to be sure. Re-read the sentence, and there is a . stuck somewhere in there.

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Re: *China* is ahead

As far as I know even North Korea doesn't conscript nearly everybody for life in the military (ie slavery) like Eritrea which is why they are bleeding refugees. NK probably comes close though.

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"the police have since 1984 been able to . . ."

If that was in a work of fiction, critics and public alike would pan it for lazy writing.

But it's just reality.

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Anonymous Coward

Not surprised

When they are not allowed to mention olive oil wrestling and threesomes.

At least Irish press can mention it.

Note : Do not care about the threesome, but do care about press gagging.

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Re: Not surprised

but do care about press gagging

Hey, enough! Whatever goes on between consenting journalists behind closed newsroom doors is entirely their own business.

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This post has been deleted by a moderator

This post has been deleted by a moderator

MJI
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Re: Not surprised

There is even a song about AB as well!

Did the other injunction at Ryan Giggs time ever get publicised?

Worst thing about superinjunctions was that you were not allowed to deny being the person it was about. Notably other sports people during RG case.

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This post has been deleted by a moderator

Anonymous Coward

Re: threesomes

Note : Do not care about the threesome, but do care about press gagging.

OK, can someone explain why this is different to "revenge porn" ?

What's the difference between "I've got some photos on my ex I'd like to post on some dodgy website" and "I've some some photos of some 'celebrity' I'd like to sell to which ever news paper will give me the most dosh"

Am I missing something?

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(Written by Reg staff)

Moderator comment

PAY ATTENTION

The celebrity threesome injunction has not been discharged.

Kindly do not post any reference to the identities of those who brought it. El Reg is a UK publication and subject to English contempt of court law.

Contempt of court is a criminal matter carrying up to two years' imprisonment, without a full trial, and/or an apparently unlimited fine.

Write what you like elsewhere on the internet, but here you'll play by our rules.

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Re: Not surprised

"Do not care about the threesome, but do care about press gagging"

So we should have a free and unrestricted press? Free to publish whatever they want about anyone? That implies no right to privacy at all.

I've seen ordinary people's lives destroyed by News Corp. It isn't pretty.

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Re: Moderator comment

Nice to see an example of what's brought us as low as 38th place in action. Very apt.

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MJI
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Re: Not surprised

gagging.

Everywhere else in the world but England and Wales.

I would also say that the deleted messages were safe as they did not mention any names.

Hinted at, but no ID

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Re: Not surprised

I want to know more about olive oil wrestling. I have an unopen bottle of olive oil in my kitchen.......

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Moderator comment

Why do you think I left out names, not for me, but for ElReg

It is not the user who would have to to deal wth the lawyers but ElReg

But then of course BOFH could arrange for a handy lift shaft.

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Re: Moderator comment

You may have deleted my comment, but you can't stop me upvoting you!

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Unhappy

Re: Moderator comment

I would not dream of furnishing any details of such prurient crap.

I would however put it to you that your comments and concerns illustrate exactly why the UK comes in below places such as Surinam, Chile, Cape Verde etc.

You only have yourselves to blame 'jounos'.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Moderator comment

When it does get discharged can you write an article about it please?

I can think of a thousand puns for it. I would do one now but ? ? ? ? ? ? (Left as ? out of respect for el reg and your predicament)

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Re: Not surprised

"I would also say that the deleted messages were safe as they did not mention any names."

Then you have no clue about contempt of court. The rules are very strict. There are conventions agreed by trained journalists to allow limited reporting without revealing identity, but they are horribly complicated and breach can, and does, result in convictions.

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Megaphone

Re: Not surprised

"Free to publish whatever they want about anyone?"

Actually, this is a perfectly fine state of affairs. Yes, it does mean that some people will get bad press. It also opens up journalists and publications to libel suits. So, any publication that wants to publish something has to make absolutely certain that they aren't being duped by their sources.

Nothing that I've stated above differs from the current status quo. So exactly what about removing the various restrictions on speech would up end that? Nothing.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Not surprised

The Injunction appears to be in place to protect their children from the knowledge of their parents' threesome arrangements (whereas everybody else already knows about it).

God protect the children from the knowledge of (2^N -1) possible permutations where N = 3.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: threesomes

Of course if they get further down the list the press will have to start reporting they are number one on the list.

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Anonymous Coward

Terrorist attacks are the means, not the cause, by which press freedom has been curtailed.

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Unhappy

What a sorry, impoverished little island we have become.

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Since many years I have learned not to believe a single word that appears in the printed press.

Freedom to print lies is what they actually want, the press in UK has repeatedly proven itself too irresponsible for freedom.

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Anonymous Coward

I'm surprised we got 38th. Where are articles about TTIP in the main press? Where is any opposition to IPB in the main press? What purpose does the main press serve any more other than to push the agenda of business or politicians which are already aligned? Are the main press free to write real journalistic stories or are they controlled by their editors?

All these rhetorical questions point to us not having a free press but more likely a bought one controlled by those that have money and power.

There are few places left that expose the corrupt and that is the only time the main press report on it.

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This is about if they are free to investigate something if they choose to, not about if their corporate overlords allow them to.

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Anonymous Coward

It's shocking how they never mention it

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-31631461 "TTIP: Transatlantic trade deal text leaked to BBC"

http://beta.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-33422086 "TTIP talks: Transparency call for EU-US trade disputes"

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Anonymous Coward

@AC

Really?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-31631461 "Biased crap about a leak saying the NHS is safe"

http://beta.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-33422086 "The EU is apparently arguing with itself to stop those pesky secret courts"

Both the above were in response to other stories about TTIP, so they had no choice.

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You cannot hope to bribe or twist

(thank God!) the British journalist.

But, seeing what the man will do

unbribed, there’s no occasion to.

Seems appropriate somehow.

It's a hard survey to quantify. In some ways the UK has some of the most free press in the world. They're much less restrained by taste or social pressure than in many other countries. Our politicians get a lot shorter shrift from our press in general than do American ones, or most of the rest of Europe. So it's a bit more anarchic, and elements more likely to kick the establishment. We've also got a comparitively wide variety of viewpoints - even though there are two really big players in the Murdoch press/Sky and the BBC. On the other hand we've got tough libel laws, a new system of press regulation that's still only half completed, and some dodgy legislation like RIPA - which the police and government too often abuse. So it's a bit of a mixed bag.

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Libel law changes

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Chiropractic_Association_v_Singh

led to "new statutory defences of truth, honest opinion, and "publication on a matter of public interest" or privileged publications "

and "requiring claimants to show actual or probable serious harm ", "setting limits on geographical relevance,"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Defamation_Act_2013

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Happy

@ I ain't Spartacus

Well said and reassuring, among the 28 EU countries 10 are still behind Blighty, those are Bulgaria 113, Romania 49, France 45, Greece 89, Hungary 67, Croatia 63, Poland 47, Italy 77, Slovenia 40, Malta 46.

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FAIL

To be taken with a pinch of salt - Objective it is not

Russia 138th yet Russia tolerates virulent attacks on its President and the open advocacy of the removal of Putin and his replacement by a traitor who would ibe under the control of Western leaning 'oligarchs'.

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Re: To be taken with a pinch of salt - Objective it is not

>Russia 138th yet Russia tolerates virulent attacks on its President

Not in any country Putin has power they don't. Putin has a solution for that pesky Western media as well.

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"virulent attacks"

You mean people saying that they really don't like him. Not a very high bar I think.

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Anonymous Coward

>US media freedom, enshrined in the First Amendment to the 1787 constitution, has encountered a major obstacle – the government’s war on whistleblowers

Change you can believe in.

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Except that it's not much of a change. US executive administrations and legislatures, at the federal and state levels, have generally been hostile to whistleblowers, and to freedom of the press and civil rights in general, for decades.

There are occasional exceptions, such as the FOIA extension for electronic documents during the Clinton administration, but most of the pro-free-press stuff happened in the 1960s and 1970s. Since then it's mostly been efforts by the executives and legislatures to restrict press freedoms and access to records and meetings, with only some resistance from the courts.

Certainly the record of the Obama administration, and Congress during that time, has not been good - and Obama's claims about promoting transparency ring hollow.

But it's not so much "change we can believe in" as "meet the new boss, same as the old boss" - and even more the persistence of hegemonic power through the cumulative effects of a widespread network of actors, human and institutional, with various bits of influence.

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Anonymous Coward

>But it's not so much "change we can believe in" as "meet the new boss, same as the old boss"

Agree somewhat bitterly. The whole hope and change thing being a bit ironic.

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Black Helicopters

Explaination

The reason New Zealand is so high on the list is because the press here only ever publishes celebrity nonsense, panegyrics on our glorious Prime Minister and sport reporting.

There's no need for the authorities to repress the press, they've censored themselves.

(Except Radio NZ, our own little BBC which has had it's funding frozen for the last dozen years or so).

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Black Helicopters

Re: Explaination

Simple reason why the PM is so glossy - It's easy to shine at night. A more competent opposition would have long ago taken the shine off. Instead they've had incompetent after incompetent.

Also I approve of disfunding RNZ, it's the most tediously smug bit of the airwaves by quite some margin - pretentions to be a "BBC" might play a part in that.

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Re: Explaination

RNZ might be smug GrumpyKiwi, but at least they make an effort to hold Ministers' feet to the fire occasionally. Have you ever heard Paul Henry "interview" a Minister? The word "Lickspittle" comes to mind.

The unofficial Government boycott of Morning Report says a lot in my view.

You are quite correct about the opposition, but that's what happens when a backbench MP "earns" more than $150,000 per year.

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Never heard of Eritrea before

And here it's only mentioned as the worst of the worst that so far, is still worse than the US and UK.

Interesting. So now they have to pad out the bottom of the list to keep those bastions of democracy from looking like they're too far down the list?

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Re: Never heard of Eritrea before

Might be because Eritrea is a UN member, I've heard of it once before in regards to their human rights record which is not the best.

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Re: Never heard of Eritrea before

Really? They were at war with Ethiopia for thirty years, ending in 1991. I know they're way over in East Africa, but still...

And then there was another war with Ethiopia in ... let's see ... 1998-2000.

And even for those who don't pay attention to all the myriad conflicts of the the twentieth century - and I'm sure I haven't heard of all of them either, as keeping track would be a full-time job - you'd think folks would know about this one, since Eritrea controls a big chunk of Red Sea coastline (it's what makes Ethiopia land-locked), so it's of some strategic importance.

Anyway, it's a pretty miserable place, according to the reports I've seen (and this one certainly doesn't make it sound any better). But considering it borders Ethiopia and Sudan, and was the result of Italy's especially half-assed colonization efforts during the African Land Grab, and then the long war for independence... well, it'd be foolish to expect better.

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