Friday, 6 January 2012

Filkin's recommendations risk a "closed shop"

I wrote a couple of days ago about the Filkin report into the close ties between the Met Police and journalists.

The report recommended that police must keep a record of any conversation with journalists, and expect it to be subject to an ‘audit’as well as warning against loose ties and off the record conversations over drinks.

There is an interesting counter argument in the comment section of this morning's Daily Mail in which the author says that far from creating a set of satisfactory guidelines it

risks creating a ‘closed shop’ in which police are too scared to pass on information, even where it is of huge public interest, in case they are subject to a witch-hunt by senior officers who it suits to conceal inconvenient truths and restrict all communication to official channels.
Indeed it continues

 Journalists will be treated as a potential enemy best avoided – despite the overwhelming majority of reporters being interested only in exposing wrongdoing, helping the police to bring criminals to justice (as the Mail demonstrated so vividly in the Lawrence case) and, vitally, defending the public’s right to know.
It seems the paper has come right out against these recommendations with its flamboyant columnist Richard Littlejohn weighing in.

You can read his synopsis HERE

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