LONDON – A British court has rebuffed the press in its latest attempt to scupper new rules developed in the wake of the country’s phone hacking scandal.
Officials are working to create a body which would subject Britain’s newspapers and magazines to a government-backed watchdog intended to curb the abuses uncovered by the scandal, but many journalists worry the supposedly independent body could be abused by politicians to punish publications they don’t like.
The press has been fighting a rear-guard action to avoid regulation, proposing an alternative watchdog and going to court in an attempt to block government action.
Wednesday’s defeat is unlikely to be final. Several publications have already threatened to boycott the new body, and some talk of taking the fight to the European Court of Human Rights.