Monday, August 08, 2011

Honey, Disconnect The Phone

Alastair Machray, editor of the Oldham Echo, isn't a very happy soul at the moment. Exasperated at the new round of job losses he's been instructed to make, there's another dark cloud on the horizon. And it's a bloody big one, too.
Whenever, Liverpool is graced by a visit from Sir Thumbs-Up, aka Macca (you know, the guy who played bass guitar in the Beatles), both the Echo & Daily Ghost treat it as a local version of the Second Coming. Pages are cleared for lavish, self-congratulatory missives about how four lads from our city made history, how wonderful it all was, etc., etc. The meat in Oldham Hall Street's sandwich at such heady moments is an "interview" with the man himself. It's fearless, investigative journalism at its best ("How do you feel being back home?" "Are you looking forward to the concert?", that sort of thing).
Alas, such treats may be a thing of the past, as Trinity Mirror comes under even greater scrutiny over its own involvement in phone-hacking. It seems that McCartney's voicemails were hacked by the Daily Mirror some years back ( ).
Given that the Mirror is clearly part of the same publishing stable, & given that McCartney's response has been suitably indignant, there is a deep concern on Oldham Hall Street that, rightly or wrongly, they'll no longer have "access", that risible term in journalism's lexicon, to the ex-Beatle; McCartney's people, always PR & media-savvy, may well view the Daily Ghost & Oldham Echo as part of a hostile media conglomerate.
Filling those pages with Pete Best's reminiscences just wouldn't be the same, would it?

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