Monday 23 October 2017

Ruth Dudley Edwards: Top hack has only himself to blame for current suffering

Andrew Marr's troubles have helped bring about a debate on privacy versus press freedom, writes Ruth Dudley Edwards

Journalists are warned against becoming the story, but last week Andrew Marr -- probably the UK's best-known and most respected member of the press -- did just that.

To prevent the Daily Mail from exposing an old affair, in 2008 he gagged it legally. Another famous journo, Have I Got News for You star Ian Hislop, editor of Private Eye, spent tens of thousands challenging his injunction. Marr's photo is all over the newspapers and TV now, and not in a nice way.

Being an honest hack, I hereby declare my interest. I've known Andrew Marr for more than 20 years -- he's given a couple of my books great reviews and even launched one of them; he once offered me a job when he edited this newspaper's sister, the UK Independent; and he's pleasant, interesting company. I greatly admire his intelligence, his curiosity, his decency and his enthusiasm for his trade, so I'm really sorry he's suffering the way he is. But I fear he brought it on himself.

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