RECOMMENDATIONS expected to be delivered by Lord Justice Leveson in two days’ time – following his extensive, recent investigation into Press standards – may not be applicable in Scotland, it has emerged.
It follows a recognition that Press regulation is a devolved matter in Scotland, in contrast to broadcasting, which is reserved to Westminster.
Begins a report in today’s Courier newspaper: “Any attempt to bring in new laws to state-regulate the Scottish press would have to be decided by MSPs.”
A Scottish Parliament spokesperson confirmed to allmediascotland.com: “Regulation of print media is a devolved matter in Scotland, since not reserved under Schedule 5 of the Scotland Act 1998; it is also devolved in Northern Ireland but reserved in Wales.”
And a Scottish Government spokesperson added: “Regulation of the print Press is a devolved matter. The Scottish Government is awaiting the recommendations of the Leveson Inquiry, and will respond in due course.”
The Leveson Inquiry was ordered following allegations of phone hacking against the News of the World, which last year saw the paper shut down.
Writes Simon Johnson, in the Daily Telegraph: “[Prime Minister] David Cameron is due to make a statement to the Commons on Thursday, the day the report into media ethics is published, outlining his plans to reform the system in the wake of the phone hacking scandal.
“But the First Minister [Alex Salmond] has so far refused to follow suit despite press regulation being devolved to the Scottish Government, thereby allowing him to introduce a different system if he wishes.”