Letter from the i editor: Extremely newsworthy


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The Independent Online

Some readers have objected to our coverage of the Amanda Knox-Raffaele Sollecito appeal against their convictions for the murder of Meredith Kercher.

I pre-empted the wider media’s coverage in this space last Friday, suggesting Kercher had been forgotten. That was before the verdict. Since then, we’ve tried to ensure we featured a sense of the dismayed Kerchers’ bewilderment at the outcome. We also tried to cover Sollecito. It wasn’t enough for some readers — who said that i had fallen into the easy “trap” of making it the “Amanda show”.

I can’t explain the Knox case’s “tragically fixed narrative” any better than i’s own Christina Patterson did in her “My View” yesterday. But, I do think that on any serious analysis of the flaky evidence, they both had to be found not guilty. Both the Italian police and media, who were too eager to lap up that narrative, must question themselves. And, so should we, here at i.

We did feature Knox more than he, but she is a more fascinating character, and yes, as an English-speaker, accessible to a wider UK audience — look at the New York helicopter crash that is of greater interest because the victims are British. I wrote before that a part of the Knox fascination is how she looks — not like a satanic killer! But there is no being “taken in”. Being a pretty, white, middle-class girl who (gasp!) was not a virgin does not make her more “guilty” than anyone else. Being able to draw upon family and friends’ support does not mean the quashing of her conviction was any less correct.

And, yes, she sells papers. i’s circulation was up on Tuesday, so many of you must agree she was extremely newsworthy.