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

Looking at paragraph 50, it says:

"If someone has had that operation, then it is true, correct, and you go to them. The problem you can have, you always have, you can come to me and say, 'Fern Britton has had a gastric band', and we go to Fern Britton and she says, 'No, I haven't', and her agents say, 'No, she hasn't.' We are in a difficult spot then because it is a flat denial and it can happen. Often they lie. But then you are faced with a situation whereby we might say to you, 'Guys, look, we are not going to use this information, but can you give us anything else other than just your word? Is there a document somewhere, a piece of paper? Is there an email, something that would prove she had it?'"

It seems there that Mr Owens is raising two possible uses of the material that was being offered. One, he's suggesting that if a newspaper has information about a story, it can be used to be put to the subject of the story and if the subject of the story confirms it, then it can be published. That's what he's suggesting, isn't it? In this case, using the example of Ms Britton.

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