The transcripts of the official inquiry into the culture, practices and ethics of the press. More…

I say that there are certainly cases where there is a public interest defence. If you're a politician who campaigns on a family values platform, then it's definitely a public interest to have his -- and he's being -- you know, having an extramarital affair or he likes to dress up as a nun and sleep with prostitutes, we need to know about it because he's a hypocrite. But I think that the vast majority of these exposes of people's sex life are not in the public interest and the public interest defences as offered by tabloid newspapers are very flimsy at best. They'll say, oh well, you know, Ryan Giggs trades on his reputation, but he doesn't, he trades -- to me, quite clearly, on the fact that he's a brilliant footballer and I don't believe that anyone is buying a pair of Ryan Giggs football boots because they think that he's a great family man. I think they're buying it because he's won lots of trophies for Manchester United.

Funnily enough, I read in the Independent this morning that apparently I do the same thing, I trade on my good name, and therefore there's a public interest defence in going into my private life, but I wasn't aware I traded on my good name. I've never had a good name. And it's made absolutely no difference at all. I'm the man who was arrested with a prostitute and the film still made tons of money. It doesn't -- it doesn't matter.

Keyboard shortcuts

j previous speech k next speech