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

I think there is an important aspect of that in that the issues may not change but the number of people who are presented with them does increase, and this is a point I've argued academically regarding -- you have an existing law, for example, regarding conflicts between jurisdictions and it makes sense but then over time you have more people coming up against that law who may not be aware of it, may not understand. To me that creates need to ensure that the law is clear, predictable, well-understood and not indeed confined to those we teach with specific journalistic careers because the ability of individuals to publish, to tweet, to communicate, means that because they can do it, they are very likely to, and the more they do it, the more that these longstanding ethical and legal issues will simply affect people who hadn't thought of themselves acting in that fashion.

It's funny that there is such criticism of the idea of media studies at times, you know, belittled as a Mickey Mouse subject and so on. I think now more than ever there is a need to explain the power of media, the degree to which there can be choke points and gatekeepers and the types of laws that would affect someone who decides to write a blog, to take a photograph and post it online, because it's not just those who have received formal legal training, whether it be on the job or in a journalism school, that's going to affect it. That to me is the difference, so I agree exactly with what you're saying. It's not really about no one has ever leaked documents before. It's the way in which people have the opportunity to leak, comment, republish, send to friends and so on, that's where it becomes trickier.

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