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

I did indeed. I was rung up -- as I said, I still work a lot in print journalism too. I write a lot of articles, and I was rung up by the Daily Mail in this situation and they said, "Everybody's talking about Dawn French's weight loss. Would you write about it?" My first reaction was: "Hm, I don't think so, because --" I don't know. But then I thought: well, actually Dawn French is a national treasure and we have all noticed that she's looking so brilliant at the moment and women up and down the land are really interested by that sort of thing, and having been there myself, and I knew I could write from a personal perspective -- I have and had my own battle with weight -- I agreed to do an article as long as it could be totally supportive and very affectionate, and I did write -- and I did give a great thought about the ethics of writing that, because it's not as if Dawn French had agreed to do an interview with me. I was simply writing what they wanted to be in the style of an open letter, from one woman to another, saying, "Hey, you look fantastic, you look wonderful." I didn't mention anything that wasn't already in the public domain or things that Dawn has indeed said herself in the public domain, just congratulating her on looking so good. A little bit of a touch of warning to her that women in the public eye, their weight is noticed. Their weight is always the subject of public debate and that she needs to be wary of that, but that's it. It was an affectionate letter from somebody who is a great admirer of her and that's how it appeared. I didn't particularly like the headline, but the words that I had written were supportive and yes, I had thought a great deal about what I wrote before I wrote it and I stand by it. It was affectionate and supportive.

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