For the same reason we’re letting Stand For Marriage Maine off the hook in its NPR dispute, we also want the Daily Mail and columnist Jan Moir to be left alone — by the
government industry’s governing body — even though she wrote a pretty terrible column about Stephen Gately’s death. Britain’s Press Complaints Commission is investigating the newspaper after receiving some 22,000 complaints over Moir. But what does that mean, exactly?
The PCC is looking into three possible violations of the press code of practice (a code that is, frankly, ridiculous in purpose). Those clauses cover accuracy, intrusion into grief or shock, and discrimination. None of these alleged infractions are worth investigating, let alone punishing. (Matthew Cain explains exactly why here.) Let the newspapers print all the hatred they want. If that’s their business model, the free market will soon punish them more severely (read: consumers will pressure advertisers to flee) than a
government governing censorship agency.
We don’t want Big Brother examining our content, which we’re wholly entitled to manufacture as we see fit. So we don’t want them harping on the Daily Mail either. Is this a self-serving position to take? Certainly. But it’s also a position that maintains the status quo of a free press — and a reader base entitled to consuming whatever information they choose.
Continue the Twitter-bashing of Moir and the Mail. Just don’t let the government decide who gets to say what.