Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Banish hacking – but don’t move the goalposts

I enjoyed Hugh Grant’s appearance on Question Time last week as he was rolled out as the most eloquent celebrity hackee to stick the boot into News International.

What earned him even more brownie points was the way he shrugged off ex-Sun columnist John Gaunt’s ludicrous side-swipe in referring referred to an embarrassing incident long ago when Grant found himself in the papers for a personal faux pas.

But he missed the point entirely when he told Newsnight viewers a couple of nights later that stories about the personal lives of the likes of Ryan Giggs were not in the public interest.

They absolutely are. Zillion-pound-a-week footballers and their pecadillos are potentially one of the real victors of the NoW demise.

With serious debate now on the cards about what (ethical) red tops should and shouldn’t get away with, let’s not lose sight of what does actually constitute fair game.

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