Letter from the editor: Cleaning up our act

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The Independent Online

Revived and refreshed after a few days away, I arrive back to a storm of controversy. It seems the advertising watchdog has barked at us for making a TV advert which made i appear less interesting and fun than it actually is.

We’d like to thank the Advertising Standards Authority for pointing this out - we certainly won’t let it happen again. I can quite see why there was such a furore. In our advert, we had a top comedian (well, Dom Joly to be strictly accurate), looking to camera, and, with a knowing wink, say that there would be “no celebrity gossip nonsense” in i. What he didn’t know was that, a few weeks later, there was a story about Lady Gaga or some such on page 17 that, in comparison to events in Libya and elsewhere, could, technically, be called “nonsense”.

We prefer to think of it as providing some light to go with the shade; we didn’t realise we were breaking the law. It’s not as if we were offering flights for 50p that didn’t exist. Still, thank heavens for a body willing to go that extra mile to protect the public from such egregious misrepresentation. And with perfect timing, our ad is back on air today - see how we’ve cleaned up our act for you!

Meanwhile, our live events continue to do exactly as advertised. Our literary salon in Brighton at the weekend was a great success, and next Monday, i’s political columnist Steve Richards hosts a live politics show in London. His special guest is the Speaker of the Commons, John Bercow, so there’s bound to be forthright discussion. His wife may also be there - she’ll be the one dressed in nothing but a bed sheet.

Anyway, we’ve got 10 pairs of tickets to give away to the first readers who write to us at i@independent.co.uk. Send us a question or two you’d like to ask The Speaker, and Steve will include the best. Order, order. That’s the order of the day!