For the record: 08/02/2010

"No crisps, coke or beer". Business reacts badly to the Culture Secretary Ben Bradshaw’s restrictions on product placement on television
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The Independent Online

Signal strength

As the British media gears up for the spring gong fest, |starting with next month’s British Press Awards, spare a thought for colleagues at Signal FM in Port-au-Prince, who have continued to broadcast to a traumatised society, even during the jolts of the earthquake itself.

In a city where battery-operated radios are a key medium, Signal has broadcast details of text messages from stranded victims and details of hospitals still open. Some staff returned to the studios directly after pulling dead relatives from the rubble. Humbling.

Horror story

“The BBC has been castrated,” reports Dominic Sandbrook in the New Statesman. The World Service is a mere skeleton, news services are slashed and the star presenters on Sky News are Jeremy Clarkson and Rod Liddle. It’s actually Sandbrook's nightmare vision of the media under David Cameron in 2015. The other TV channels, he claims, will be showing “a relentless diet of Horne & Corden”. Now that really is worrying.

The G word

More futurism in FHM, which asks “Is Google Evil?” and picks 2023 as the year when 6 million Britons find themselves unemployable because of a “G-list” based on dodgy searches they made years earlier. Interesting thought, though the search giant will be more preoccupied by next month’s Ken Auletta book Googled: The End of the World As We Know It.

A model Tory

The Daily Telegraph’s Simon Heffer was inexplicably left out of the Press Gazette’s top 50 columnists (see Stephen Glover), his only consolation last week being described as “Top Tory pin-up” by, of all people, the Daily Mirror, in a clever propaganda piece that used the disparaging quotes of Sky’s Jeff Randall and big guns from the Conservative-leaning press to smear Cameron. “Philosophically naive and vacuous” was the chosen contribution from Hefferlump.