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The Challenge of Adaptation

  • Ralph Negrine
  • Colin Seymour-Ure

Abstract

The relationship between Parliament and the media is little different now from nearly half a century ago. Today, as then, its dominant feature is tension. This derives largely from the ambivalence of parliamentarians: they both recognise and dislike their dependence on the media for publicity, without which the effective representation and scrutiny of government are impossible. Some tension derives, too, from the dependence of the media on Parliament: the press has historic roots in party politics, while broadcasters have a ‘public service’ obligation to report Parliament. Parliament and media certainly retain mutual interests. But these are overlapping rather than identical. The balance of advantage is summed up in the truism that although the media can get on without politics, politics cannot get on without the media – and it is this last fact which is the main problem for Parliament.

Keywords

Prime Minister Party System Select Committee Media Landscape Political Marketing 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

  1. 1.
    On those and comparable changes in media relations with Parliament, see for example Colin Seymour-Ure, The British Press and Broadcasting. Blackwell, 1996.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Simon Jenkins, quoted in the Committee on Standards in Public Life (Chair: Lord Nolan), First Report. vol. 2: Transcripts of Oral Evidence. Cm 2850–II), HMSO 1995, p. 7.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Select Committee on Modernisation of the House of Commons, First Report, HC 368 2003–04, Connecting Parliament with the Public. June 2004.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Richard Rose, The Prime Minister in a Shrinking World. Cambridge: Polity, 2001, p. 6, 24.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Bob Phillis (Chairman), An Independent Review of Government Communications, Cabinet Office, January 2004.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Roy Greenslade, ‘National Newspaper Circulation’, Media Guardian. 13 December 2004, p. 9.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Stephen Barnett and Emily Seymour, A Shrinking Iceberg Travelling South …: Changing Trends in British Television. University of Westminster, 1999.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Robert Harris, Good and Faithful Servant. Faber, 1991Google Scholar
  9. Bernard Ingham, Kill the Messenger. HarperCollins, 1991Google Scholar
  10. Peter Oborne, Alastair Campbell: New Labour and the Rise of the Media Class, Aurum Press, 1999Google Scholar
  11. Colin Seymour-Ure, Prime Ministers and the Media. Blackwell, 2003.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ralph Negrine
  • Colin Seymour-Ure

There are no affiliations available

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