The months-long quest for British press regulation shows no sign of imminent settlement. The latest chapter features a letter from 100 prominent figures from the arts, science, academia and elsewhere who encourage publishers to sign on to a royal charter system. One year after the Leveson inquiry, there are no signs of consensus on the next steps.
Roy Greenslade, the venerable Guardian media columnist, notes that this new letter adds to the pile. Those who have been victims of press misbehaviour have already suggested the royal charter, rather than the industry-created self-regulatory body, is the route to pursue. Among the signatories to the letter are some prominent journalists, including former editors and Nick Davies of the Guardian.
Human Rights Watch reports that four journalists have been killed in Iraq in the last month. Meanwhile, journalists there are facing prosecution for defamation for their activities and are subjected to increased harassment. Journalists report confiscation of equipment and arrests when they cover politically sensitive topics.
Alaa Abdel-Fatah, one of Egypt's most prominent bloggers, has been arrested under a new law that restricts protests in the country. A warrant had been issued for his arrest and Abdel-Fatah had indicated he would turn himself in to authorities, but instead his home was raided late Thursday. The AP reports his wife was beaten in the raid and laptops were seized. Among other things, the new law requires a three-day notification of any protests.