For the record: 02/03/2009

"The most sustained run of scoops and exclusives in the history of broadcast news in the UK." Citation for Robert Peston, winner of both the television journalist of the year and specialist journalist of the year titles at the RTS Journalism Awards last Thursday

On the way out

Those who have seen Sean Penn's Oscar-winning performance in 'Milk' might be particularly concerned by last week's news of the possible sale or closure of the 'San Francisco Chronicle', which the movie rightly credited for its historic endorsement of gay-rights activist Harvey Milk's candidacy in local elections in 1977. The 'Chronicle' is said by its owners, the Hearst Corporation, to be struggling beneath "staggering losses".



Pay no notice

Geordie Greig, newly installed as editor of the 'Evening Standard', is deeply unimpressed by false rumours being emailed among his staff that he's on a salary of £540,000. The Lebedev regime at the 'Standard' just isn't like that, he complains, pointing out that he doesn't even have a chauffeur.



Loss of voice

It's the end of an era at the 'New York Post', where Liz Smith, the "Diva of Dish" who turned the newspaper's "Page Six" into America's most famous gossip column, has been given her cards. A shocked Smith told Tina Brown's website, The Daily Beast, that the firing was "emasculating" and that the experience "makes you feel like you've lost your identity to some extent". Then again, she is 86.



Cultural attack

Cheap shot of the week was Liz Jones's vicious attack on Culture Secretary Andy Burnham's wife in the 'Daily Mail'. "Let me try to overlook the unadorned, Eastern Europe refugee make-up and hairstyle," wrote Jones. "As well as the floppy hat you probably had left over from some awful suburban wedding." Jones later sought to explain her outburst by saying that "Frankie Burnham" was in the public eye and "once appeared on 'Blind Date'". Mrs Burnham, who is Dutch, is also a mother of three and a former marketing executive with BSkyB and MTV who met her husband while they were students at Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge.

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