Alastair Campbell: Why the invasion of UK newspapers can only weaken standards in Irish journalism
I WAS in Ireland when the Sunday Tribune closed, and the Irish Mail on Sunday tried to con readers with a four page wraparound pretending to be the Tribune, with their own paper inside. In human terms, think jumping into a grave and stealing a few jewels from the corpse.
Now the Mail is battling in court to justify the four-page wrap, complete with Sunday Tribune masthead. One of the reasons I always loved going to Ireland when we were in government – beyond the obvious challenge of the peace process – was that the Irish press was more serious and more committed to real political coverage. The Mail’s invasion alongside other UK titles is helping to erode that.
Newspaper publishing is a tough, competitive trade, but to try and pass yourself off as your competitor when 40 plus journalists have just lost their jobs after one of the country’s most reputable newspapers goes into receivership is immoral at best.