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Magazine of the Chartered Institute of Journalists

CIoJ welcomes government decision to scrap Leveson Two and Section 40

Press release
Release date: 2 March 2018

The Chartered Institute of Journalists welcomes the government announcement to scrap Leveson Inquiry Part 2 and Section 40 of the Crime and Courts Act, which threatened to punish news publishers refusing to sign up to a state approved regulator.

Incoming Institute Vice President Professor Tim Crook says the government should now scrap the Press Recognition Panel and that it was time for the regulator IMPRESS, largely funded by the controversial Max Mosley, to leave the media landscape.

He said: “Journalists and news publishers need clarity and leadership.”

He added: “We need a single independent regulator for journalism ethics and we hope IPSO will take on reforms to attract participation from all national newspaper publishers including The Guardian, Financial Times, London Standard and the online Independent.”

The Institute believes IPSO should involve representatives from professional journalist associations such as the CIoJ and NUJ.

Tim Crook says the government “has quite rightly responded to the democratic voice of public consultation.”

The Government received 174,730 direct responses to its consultation into whether the Leveson Inquiry should be re-opened, along with petitions bearing 200,428 signatories.

Some 66% of direct respondents thought that Part 2 of the inquiry should be terminated, compared to 12% who thought it should continue.

An overwhelming 79% favoured full repeal of Section 40, with many expressing concerns that it would have a ‘chilling effect’ on the freedom of the press.

Just 7% said the measure should be implemented in full.