Press intrusion and inaccurate reporting in the UK are getting worse because the recession has forced newspapers to make cutbacks, says the BBC in summarizing A More Accountable Press, a report published today by the Media Standards Trust which says some newspapers are sacrificing standards to maintain sales.
The BBC report says that the system of self-regulation of the press, overseen by the Press Complaints Commission, needs urgent reform.
The most telling statement in the BBCâ€™s report is this:
[â€¦] A YouGov survey found only 7% of 2,024 people questioned trust UK national newspapers to behave responsibly.
Is that really any surprise, though?
If only ten percent of what Davies wrote about is true, youâ€™ll never trust the media (especially the Daily Mail: nearly 40 pages about that newspaperâ€™s deeds) or the PR profession again. Ever.
Whether itâ€™s the recession, profit/greed (a strong feature in Nick Daviesâ€™ book), a combination of some or all of those things, or something else entirely, A More Accountable Press seems to confirm what other research indicates, notably the latest Edelman 2009 Trust Barometer published earlier this month â€“ trust in the media looks to be in terminal decline.
[â€¦] Of those interviewed by YouGov, 75% said newspapers frequently published stories they knew to be inaccurate, while 70% said there were too many invasions of privacy by newspapers.
The 7% level of people who trusted newspapers to behave responsibly was lower than that for banks.
A further 60% called for greater government intervention to protect privacy, while 73% said they would like the government to do more to correct inaccuracies in the media.
Further signs that pave the way for greater government oversight, if not regulation.