Hold the Front Page - News Gathering in a Time of Change

This event will be live streamed on this webpage. Please come back on Wednesday 12th December at 6.30pm and tune in!

The News of the World phone-hacking scandal in the United Kingdom has had massive world-wide effects. It exposed the unethical (and illegal) news gathering practices taking place at News International , and left much of the public wondering to what extent the revelations reflect the standards of Australian news media. The scandal reignited debate around the ethical practice of journalism, forced the establishment of The Leveson Inquiry in the UK and prompted the setting up of the Finkelstein inquiry in Australia.

Many have said that the problems in the UK have arisen not because of lack of regulation but because of a failure of the enforcement of the criminal law but is that right? How do we protect the vital role that journalists have in our liberal democracies and, at the same time, hold them to account for the ways in which they do their work? Who should decide whether the public interest in a story justifies the methods used to obtain that story?

As media technology is bringing big changes, and even threatening the viability of mainstream news media outlets, should this make a difference? What are the appropriate standards? What constructive role can journalists play in an increasingly media enabled world?

Lord Justice Leveson was appointed Chairman of this Inquiry into Culture, Practice and Ethics of the Press and will make recommendations for press regulation in his report, to be released this Autumn. Although he will not be discussing his recommendations for the UK, he will raise issues that must be at the heart of any discussion about the way journalists go about their work.

He was appointed a Judge of the High Court, Queen's Bench Division, in 2000, and Lord Justice of Appeal of England and Wales in 2006 and, since 2009, is Chairman of the Sentencing Council for England and Wales.