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Does Britain have a free press?

Not quite. Here’s one thing you can do about it.



In Britain, it is often asserted that we have a free press. This is not completely true. There are numerous subjects which national newspapers and broadcasters either ignore or devote token attention.

Sometimes the reason for this is sinister – for instance the conspiracy of silence over phone hacking. More often, editors decide that certain important issues will not command the attention of a wide readership. This is why it is so hard to get stories about oppression, exploitation, abuse of human rights or Islamophobia into any newspaper.

Hence the importance of openDemocracy – and why we need to support its vital work.

openDemocracy has published many articles of mine over the years. It fills me with confidence because the editors are very careful and honest people. They work with writers to make sure that our journalism is fair and solidly based. That is why I offered my long article on the closure of Muslim bank accounts by HSBC to openDemocracy, when I could not get it published in the Daily Telegraph last autumn. It was the obvious choice when I wanted to set out the reasons for my resignation from the Daily Telegraph in February.

openDemocracy has a track record of raising complicated and important subjects, which are ignored by mainstream media outlets. This is why I am proud to be associated with openDemocracy, and why I want you to be too.

Its editors are motivated by a love for the truth, and work incredibly hard for very little. Rightly, they want to bring it to an even wider audience. Naturally, this costs money. So today I’m urging you with all my heart to support this noble institution. Let’s strengthen openDemocracy so that it keeps holding power to account for many years to come.

I am giving it £100. Please match me if you can, or give what you can afford here - and share this with anyone who might be able to do the same.

With thanks,

Peter Oborne

How to donate

Click here to donate via JustGiving, or send a text message to the number 70072 (quoting the code OPDE65 and the amount donated). Or you can send a cheque made out to the Open Trust to: openDemocracy, 18 Ashwin Street, London E8 3DL. Thank you for your support.

About the author

Peter Oborne is the former chief political commentator of the Telegraph and reports for Channel 4's Dispatches and Unreported World. He has written a number of books identifying the power structures that lurk behind political discourse, including The Triumph of the Political Class. He is a regular on BBC programmes Any Questions and Question Time and often presents Week in Westminster. He was voted Columnist of the Year at the Press Awards in 2013.

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