Graham Johnson, a freelance journalist and former Sunday Mirror Investigations Editor said today that tabloid newspapers will not survive under a new regulatory system.
Speaking as part of a panel at the POLIS International Journalism Conference at the London School of Economics today, Johnson said that tabloids fail to serve the public interest, and in a post Leveson world, stories of no public interest will be “snuffed out” as they fail to serve “the common good”.
Despite tabloids selling in millions to “the underclass and the working class”, Johnson said that tabloid journalists “physically and socially cut themselves off from society”. According to a study conducted by The Sutton Trust, 50% of senior journalists are from privately educated backgrounds. This, paired with the locations of leading tabloid offices in areas like Wapping and Canary Wharf make the journalists “cut off from who they sell to”, said Johnson. Despite the popularity of tabloid media, Johnson sees the future of tabloids as exclusively online.
Johnson’s predictions come as part of a discussion today about whether or not investigative and tabloid journalism will survive under a new regulatory system, which we expect to see as a result of the Leveson Inquiry.