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Labour calls for inquiry into Daily Mail’s ethics



Ed Miliband has said that “a common line of decency” has been breached, after a reporter gatecrashed a memorial service for the Labour leader’s uncle.

Miliband has called on the Daily Mail’s owner Lord Rothermere to review the practices of the newspaper, arguing that a simple apology is not enough at this point.

His calls come after it was discovered that a Mail on Sunday journalist went uninvited to the private Miliband family memorial service at Guy’s Hospital in London.

The reporter approached family members to seek reactions to the article that appeared in the Daily Mail last week, in which Ralph Miliband – Ed’s father – was depicted as “the man who hated Britainbecause of his Marxists views.

Ed Miliband said, “My wider family, who are not in public life, feel understandably appalled and shocked that this can have happened.”

Following the episode, Rothermere sent a letter to the Labour leader, apologising for what happened but denying that there was a wider problem of culture and ethics within the Daily Mail and its sister paper, the Mail on Sunday.

The editor of the Sunday edition, Geordie Greig, also apologised for the intrusion, calling it a “terrible lapse of judgment”. However, the editor-in-chief of the Mail titles Paul Dacre did not express regret for the article about Miliband’s father.

Miliband said in an interview, “I want to know how these practices are allowed to happen. Not on the basis of being ‘one rogue reporter’ or ‘one rogue editor’, but what is it about the culture and practice of the organisation that makes these kind of things acceptable?

“Because the decisions made by an individual in an organisation are shaped by the culture and practice of an organisation.

After the episode, many personalities from the media and politics expressed sympathy to the Labour leader including Lord Sugar, Alastair Campbell ,Gary Lineker and a number of senior Conservatives.

Meanwhile, Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg  said on Thursday, “If anyone excels in denigrating and vilifying modern Britain it is the Daily Mail”.

Further reading:

Campbell, Sugar, Lineker et al call for Daily Mail editor Dacre to resign

The people who really hate Britain are some of our tabloid press

A free press would be a good idea

Defenders of a free press are being dishonest

The Guide to Responsible Media 2012


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