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Latest news and features from theguardian.com, the world's leading liberal voice



Published: Mon, 24 Jul 2017 10:49:10 GMT2017-07-24T10:49:10Z

Copyright: Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. 2017
 



My father and press freedom are on trial in Turkey – don’t look away, Europe | Muratcan Sabuncu

Mon, 24 Jul 2017 08:00:31 GMT2017-07-24T08:00:31Z

The trial of 12 imprisoned Cumhuriyet newspaper journalists is a warning that democracy and human rights are fragile everywhere

• Muratcan Sabuncu is the son of editor-in-chief Murat Sabuncu and president of Sorbonne Human Rights Association

We all know the story of the small child who piped up “the emperor has no clothes” while everybody was pretending to admire the despot parading through the streets. This child is analogous to those who, in the same spirit of honesty, have come out to tell the truth in today’s Turkey. The truth-tellers are in fact the real patriots, and they succeeded in becoming the conscience of a country by dispelling the fog clouding our perceptions to show us reality.

My father, Murat Sabuncu, is a truth-teller. He is the editor-in-chief of Cumhuriyet daily newspaper, which is one of the very few remaining critical but respected voices in the Turkish media. He and 11 of his colleagues from Cumhuriyet have been detained for the past nine months. Their trial will start in Istanbul on Monday.

Related: Turkey’s democracy is dying – but this brutal crackdown can’t last | Ersin Şenel

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Great British Bake Off to be sponsored by Lyle's Golden Syrup and Dr Oetker

Mon, 24 Jul 2017 06:01:28 GMT2017-07-24T06:01:28Z

Bakers’ ingredients makers sign joint £4m deal to cover the first series, Christmas specials and the spin-off An Extra Slice

The Great British Bake Off has found its final ingredients, with the kitchen cupboard staple Lyle’s golden syrup and Dr Oetker, the baking product maker, signing multi-million pound deals to be the first sponsors of the biggest show on British television.

The hunt for a sponsor has been one of the biggest-ever charm offensives undertaken by Channel 4 – which included presenters Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith appearing at an event designed to woo some of the UK’s biggest-spending brands – but it did not cook up an X-Factor-sized deal on its first outing.

Related: Peak Bake Off? UK's home baking boom soggy bottom

Related: Bake Off auction seeks to whip up sponsorship bidding frenzy

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BBC is paying too much for talent it can afford to lose

Mon, 24 Jul 2017 06:00:29 GMT2017-07-24T06:00:29Z

The BBC is a ‘selling club’, in football parlance. Its role is not to dominate viewing figures

There was a point during last week’s ritual savaging of BBC executives that one began to feel sorry for James Purnell. The former Labour minister who joined the BBC as head of digital and strategy in 2013 trailed around the studios of New Broadcasting House being gleefully mauled by journalists who are mercifully good at their jobs. Executive and star pay at the BBC is a subject loved by news producers, sadistically pitting the hated boss class and the vain talent against each other in an awkward series of explanations.

In his new role as head of radio and education, Purnell might have felt a strong impulse to clip the salary of Jeremy Vine who, in the most BBC of all BBC moments asked Purnell on his Radio 2 show: “How can you justify my salary?” Given that it is more than £700,000 a year, the honest answer would be “I can’t”, but Purnell opted for the lamer: “You’re fantastic.”

Related: Director general says he hopes BBC can close gender pay gap before 2020

Related: How the stars' salaries compare on the BBC's flagship programmes

Related: BBC stars endure grim day of self-flagellation after pay details made public

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Stranger Things season two: Netflix releases 'Thriller' trailer at Comic-Con – video

Mon, 24 Jul 2017 03:42:27 GMT2017-07-24T03:42:27Z

‘Nothing’s going to go back to the way it was.’ It’s 1984. Will Byers may have escaped the Demogorgon and been rescued from the Upside Down but the horrors of that parallel world still filter through. And now, something even bigger and more menacing threatens the sleepy town of Hawkins, Indiana. Can the boys and their families fight it? And where is Eleven? Season two premieres on 27 October

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Turkish activists decry attack on press freedom as journalists stand trial

Mon, 24 Jul 2017 03:00:25 GMT2017-07-24T03:00:25Z

Charges include claims that Cumhuriyet journalists helped the separatist Kurdistan Workers party and Gülen movement

The trial of 17 reporters and executives from Cumhuriyet, one of Turkey’s last standing opposition newspapers, is set to begin on Monday with rights activists decrying the continuing muzzling of free speech in one of the world’s largest jailers of journalists.

The charges include accusations that the newspaper’s journalists aided the separatist Kurdistan Workers party (PKK) and the Fethullah Gülen movement, which is widely believed in Turkey to have orchestrated last year’s coup attempt, and complaints of irregularities in the elections of the organisation’s board of executives.

Rights activists say the trial is an assault on freedom of expression and the accusations are absurd, because Cumhuriyet, the country’s newspaper of record that is committed to secularism, has long warned of the dangers of the Gülen movement, which itself has long been at odds with the PKK.

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Director general says he hopes BBC can close gender pay gap before 2020

Sun, 23 Jul 2017 17:49:19 GMT2017-07-23T17:49:19Z

BBC must be at forefront of change on equal pay, says Tony Hall in reply to letter from more than 40 of its high-profile female stars

The BBC director general, Tony Hall, has said he hopes the BBC can close its gender pay gap sooner than 2020, after an unprecedented intervention by more than 40 of its most high-profile female stars.

Claire Balding, Newsnight presenters Emily Maitlis and Kirsty Wark and One Show host Alex Jones were among those who wrote to Hall on Sunday to demand the BBC act to correct the pay gap, coordinated by Woman’s Hour host Jane Garvey.

Related: It’s not just the BBC that must come clean about underpaying women | Sophie Walker

Thank you for your letter.

I understand and respect why this is so important to you. Like you, I recognise just how crucial this issue is for us at the BBC and for society as a whole. It is why I have made it a personal priority over the last four years as I want the BBC at the forefront of change.

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Liam Fox demands meeting with BBC over 'negative' Brexit stories

Sun, 23 Jul 2017 17:23:01 GMT2017-07-23T17:23:01Z

Lib Dems accuse minister of ‘blatant attempt at intimidating’ broadcaster with letter to director general

Liam Fox has demanded a meeting with the BBC’s director general in a letter where he complains that the corporation consistently runs negative stories about the economic effects of Brexit.

The international trade secretary wrote to Tony Hall to ask for a face-to-face meeting about the coverage, which the Liberal Democrats said was the behaviour of “a tin-pot dictator”.

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It’s not just the BBC that must come clean about underpaying women | Sophie Walker

Sun, 23 Jul 2017 17:08:37 GMT2017-07-23T17:08:37Z

The Women’s Equality party is calling on other broadcasters to publish the salaries of their top earners, along with a gender pay gap action plan

• Sophie Walker is the leader of the Women’s Equality party

When the BBC published the salaries of its top earners, the results were not surprising, but they were shocking. They even managed, momentarily, to silence the gender pay gap myth-busters: the trolls who daily patrol social media challenging any mention of a pay gap with supposedly hard facts about the “choices” women make.

Silence fell – briefly – as everyone realised that this pay gap didn’t care about the privilege of its victims. The few female top earners were generally white, middle class and non-disabled. As horrifying and unjustifiable as the pay discrepancies are, the women who made the list earn considerable amounts of money. The BBC has also taken steps to improve its diversity. Its staff and programming still do not perfectly reflect the wider population, but compared with some other media organisations, it is making progress. So what hope do the rest of us have if the pay gap is this wide, regardless of the seniority of the staff or good intentions of the organisation?

Related: Female stars urge director general to fix BBC pay gap – full letter

Related: The BBC’s gender pay gap should galvanise all working women | Anne McElvoy

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BBC must 'look very hard at itself' over pay gap, says Jeremy Corbyn

Sun, 23 Jul 2017 13:48:29 GMT2017-07-23T13:48:29Z

Labour leader describes ‘appalling’ gender pay gap as 40 female presenters demand immediate action at BBC

The Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, says the BBC needs to “look very hard at itself” over the gender pay gap, describing the gulf between men’s and women’s pay as appalling.

Household names including Newsnight presenters Emily Maitlis and Kirsty Wark, presenters Clare Balding and Angela Rippon and One Show host Alex Jones are among more than 40 women who have written to the director general, Tony Hall, to demand the BBC act to correct the pay gap. It was coordinated by Woman’s Hour host Jane Garvey.

Revolting #bbcwomen https://t.co/rz9xkaOreY

Related: The Observer view on persisting gender inequality| Observer editorial

Related: Who earns what among BBC's top talent

So angry and depressed this is happening at #bbc feels like we've been duped - words about equality not enough #bbcwomen https://t.co/kTeOYRrH78

I hope this empowers ALL women to go into work tomorrow, look their boss in the eye and ask if they are getting paid the same as the men. https://t.co/zp8lNJQKJ3

#bbcwomen this billet doux is for ALL women at @BBC

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Female stars urge director general to fix BBC pay gap – full letter

Sun, 23 Jul 2017 12:48:55 GMT2017-07-23T12:48:55Z

Presenters including Emily Maitlis, Kirsty Wark and Fiona Bruce sign letter to Tony Hall after last week’s pay revelations

Dear Tony,

The pay details released in the annual report showed what many of us have suspected for many years … that women at the BBC are being paid less than men for the same work.

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Leftwing Breitbart? Chapo Trap House is strong new voice in resistance to Trump

Sun, 23 Jul 2017 10:00:04 GMT2017-07-23T10:00:04Z

Among Democrats and progressives, the best way ahead is up for fierce and fractious debate. Some younger voices are shouting louder than others

It has been called the leftwing alternative to Breitbart – a subversive, humorous and politics-focused new media presence that has attracted a devoted following on both sides of the Atlantic.

Related: Could Kamala Harris revive the fractured Democratic party for the 2020 election?

Related: The Resistance Now: having a chat with Bernie Sanders

Related: The Democrats' performance as an opposition party? Pathetic | Steven W Thrasher

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Martin Slumbers’ strange anti-BBC tirade may come back to haunt him | Ewan Murray

Sun, 23 Jul 2017 09:01:03 GMT2017-07-23T09:01:03Z

The R&A’s chief executive has picked a fight with an odd target and his labelling of the BBC’s Open coverage as ‘tired and outdated’ is likely to have repercussions

It is one of sport’s unwritten rules. Martin Slumbers also seemed about the least likely individual to breach it. Which did not stop the chief executive of the R&A launching a verbal grenade in advance of this Open Championship.

Related: R&A calls BBC golf coverage 'tired and outdated' and defends Sky's Open deal

Related: The Open 2017: Spieth leads crowded chasing pack as Grace cards 62 – live!

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Sexism in advertising is a problem – but hardly the worst one | David Mitchell

Sun, 23 Jul 2017 09:00:03 GMT2017-07-23T09:00:03Z

The Advertising Standards Authority’s move to stamp out gender stereotyping is a good thing, but is it really a priority?

When I heard last week’s news that the Advertising Standards Authority is proposing to crack down on gender stereotyping in adverts, I found my reaction interesting. If only you could do the same. But then I am pretty easily entertained. I’ve been known to watch golf if the remote’s out of reach.

It was quite a negative reaction – I won’t deny it. There’s no point in being ashamed – it was involuntary. It’s like someone shouting “Heil Hitler!” in their sleep. It turns out that’s just who they are.

There's nothing wrong with addressing the least of our worries. It’s better than not addressing any

Related: 'A balancing act': readers on plans to crack down on sexist adverts

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The week in radio: Woman’s Hour; A Piece of Work; The Spectator podcast

Sun, 23 Jul 2017 06:00:00 GMT2017-07-23T06:00:00Z

Jenni Murray and co took a typically level-headed look at the BBC pay shambles. Plus, a charming, if basic, new art podcast

Woman’s Hour (Radio 4) | iPlayer
A Piece of Work (WNYC) | wnyc.org
The Spectator podcast | iTunes

Much hoo-ha over pay at the BBC last week. Everyone getting het up and embarrassed. As Anna Sale, presenter of the excellent Death, Sex and Money podcast has mentioned, of those three taboos, it’s money that we really find hard to talk about. In a capitalist society, pay is directly linked to both your self-worth and how others judge you, so a low salary is a personal comment. The BBC may as well have published a list of presenters’ penis sizes. And given how many women are on that high earners’ list, that’s only barely a joke.

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Female channel bosses have earned top billing

Sun, 23 Jul 2017 06:00:00 GMT2017-07-23T06:00:00Z

Amid the controversy and pay gaps exposed by the BBC’s salary disclosures, two highly skilled and talented women have risen to the top of the broadcasting industry

Here, in the midst of current controversy, is some good news. The new leaders of both ITV and Channel 4 are both women (replacing men). More good news sees them not only succeeding on equal terms, but winning the same heady blend of salaries and add-ons. At which point, however, we encounter a few shades of grey.

Carolyn McCall, flying in from an easyJet hangar in Luton, is reportedly on course to make £25.2m over the next five years at ITV, if all goes well (an edifice built on the foundations of £900,000 pa). Her predecessor, Adam Crozier, has earned £24.9m since 2012. Alex Mahon, replacing David Abraham atop C4, can expect to hit his £881,000 a year, perhaps edging closer to a million if the ad revenue rolls in (as it did at the end of Abraham’s reign).

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The Generation Game to return to BBC with Mel and Sue

Sun, 23 Jul 2017 05:00:08 GMT2017-07-23T05:00:08Z

Family show once hosted by Bruce Forsyth and famous for conveyor belt of toasters and household electricals to be revived

Television presenters Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins will soon be back together on BBC1 again, urging on amateur competitors, but not in a baking contest.

Instead it has been announced that the two former Great British Bake Off stars are to present a fresh version of gameshow The Generation Game, a family favourite that began in 1971 and was hosted for many years by Bruce Forsyth.

Related: Female BBC stars urge corporation to 'act now' on pay and gender

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Love Island: stars’ on-screen smoking angers health charity

Sat, 22 Jul 2017 23:05:01 GMT2017-07-22T23:05:01Z

Campaigners urge Ofcom to investigate possible breach of broadcasting code by ITV bosses

The bedroom activities of Love Island’s glamorous contestants are providing many a watercooler moment in offices across the land. But their love of smoking is provoking an altogether different kind of debate.

Amid growing concerns about the rise of smoking on screens and its influence on the young, the media regulator Ofcom has been asked by a leading health charity to investigate whether the show is in breach of strict codes governing lighting up on television. Action on Smoking and Health (Ash) is questioning why the contestants’ cigarettes are contained in plain white packs which hide the highly visible – and distinctly unglamorous – graphic health warnings that carry pictures of diseased lungs and references to male impotence.

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After the pay furore, the BBC now has a chance to be a beacon for fairness | Will Hutton

Sat, 22 Jul 2017 23:02:00 GMT2017-07-22T23:02:00Z

The corporation faced down critics over its salaries for ‘talent’ and should commit to equity for all staff

‘The BBC is really hurting today,” declared Jeremy Vine outside Wogan House, the home of Radio 2 last week, as the country learned that the broadcaster was paid north of £700,000 a year. He was right, which is what the corporation’s Tory critics so ardently wanted. Over the day, various household names squirmed as they were confronted with the reality that by the standards of the mass of their viewers or listeners – those paying the licence fee – their pay was eye-wateringly high.

BBC arguments about needing to keep up with the market were palpably overstated. Where else are John Humphrys or Jeremy Vine likely to broadcast to such big audiences in such well-loved prestigious programmes with such fantastic production support? Dozens of broadcasters would jump into their shoes if given the chance. The architects of the BBC’s pay disclosure regime seemed to have achieved their objective: the BBC cannot be trusted with the public’s money – it plainly needs to be downsized or done away with.

Related: The road to gender parity in BBC pay, paved with bad intentions

Related: The BBC’s gender pay gap should galvanise all working women | Anne McElvoy

In making a commitment to pay fairness for men and women the BBC found itself living the values it purports to represent

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The Observer view on persisting gender inequality| Observer editorial

Sat, 22 Jul 2017 23:00:00 GMT2017-07-22T23:00:00Z

The UK has its first female supreme court president and second female prime minister, but massive imbalance exists – as the BBC pay row shows

Congratulations to Lady Hale. On Friday, she became the first woman to be appointed president of the UK supreme court. So now we have 12 supreme court justices, two of whom are female. In October, a study of judicial systems by the Council of Europe indicated that Britain has one of the lowest proportions of female judges. As a model of diversity, the judiciary still has a long way to go before the exceptions – in this case, the hugely talented Hale – become the rule.

Related: BBC accused of discrimination as salaries reveal gender pay gap - as it happened

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