and last editon of the News of the World. Discontinued 10th
July 2011 after 168 years.
As staff at the News of the World trooped out of the Wapping plant to a
round of applause last night anybody would have thought they had been
engaged over the years in something admiral. Many were expecting them
to hang their heads in shame.
As the media mogul himself Rupert Murdoch arrived at News International
today sporting a straw boater and apparently reading the last copy of
the NOTW, already the focus seems to have shifted regarding the culture
of newspapers like this. In its final edition we are drowned by crass
sentimentality in the form of 'the better' readers comments coupled by a
strange cherry picked montage of former front pages highlighting
pioneering stories like the expose of corruption within the Pakistani
What about all the cheap, made up, sensationalist and downright sick
stories propagated by this tacky tabloid relating to murder victims and
their families? What about the sexualising of children as seen with the
disappearance of Madeleine McCann? What about the glorification of
murderers (whereas this newspaper has generated interest in these
monsters as some kind of titillating read) and what about NOTW
journalists deleting the messages on Milly Dowler's phone so the family
were duped into believing she could still be alive?
Not to mention that the NOTW always purported to be a family newspaper
but successively published sordid sex scandal after sordid sex scandal;
then there were the veiled threats that if politicians spoke out against
the paper the NOTW would 'come after them' and publish details of their
personal lives. Yes, they were nasty bullies too and ruthlessly
profiteered from it all.
What about conditioning readers that celebrity culture is the be all and
end all of existence and saturating them with it? And what about
influencing people on how to think and vote?
In contrast, others argue that the NOTW distributes what people want to
read. How can one ever know this for sure? Material from this paper
and others like it is the top and bottom of what large sections of our
society are conditioned by.