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    Among the various drama projects I'm working on is Mrs Gucci - a musical about another dysfunctional family business, co-written with Marcos D'Cruze. More at GuccitheMusical.com

  • Romeo Trap is perhaps my favourite episode of the BBC1 undercover drama series, In Deep, which I devised and was broadcast for three seasons a decade ago. It recently has had a resurgence of interest, after the DVDs were released three years ago.

    Romeo Trap was one of the first dramas (as far as

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    We're proud to announce the West End World Premier Concert Performance of Mrs Gucci at the Arts Theatre London on October 13th 2013.

    After many years of development, the show is ready to go into production next year, and the one-off concert performance, lasting only an hour, will give you both

  • After years of development, co-writer Marcos D'Cruze and myself are delighted to announce the launch of Mrs Gucci - a fact based musical about fashion, passion and death. Go to the development site to find out more.

     

  • Apparently you can win a free copy of the second series of In Deep on TV spy: second prize is probably two copies

     

     

     

  • Apart from a series of dramatic sketches on Newsnight during the 1992 election, The Chief was my first broadcast TV.  . 

     I have no idea how many episodes I wrote of these two series, and the quality is probably mixed. Though I'd never, at this point, wanted to write cop shows, The Chief was diff



  • Ten years after it was first broadcast, In Deep is out on DVD. I really should have mixed feelings about this. The first series was all over the place. As I explain below, the pilot episode which had got the show commissioned - Darkness on the Edge of Tow which was quite Wire-like in its exploration

  • Afternoon Play – Bad Faith: Unoriginal Sin Ep 1/3

    Friday 30 September
    2.15-3.00pm BBC RADIO 4
    Lenny Henry returns as irreverent police chaplain Jake Thorne

    Lenny Henry returns to BBC Radio 4 as irreverent police chaplain Jake Thorne in a new series of Peter Jukes's acclaimed drama Ba

  • Here’s one of several other shows I’ve written for Radio, this time about social networking

    Soul Motel,  Broadcast BBC Radio 4, March 2008

     

  • Some examples of my favourite medium - radio plays - which combine the spontaneity and directness of theatre with the flmic possibilities of edited, recorded sound.

    Though I've done dozens of radio plays, they're not stored in Youtube, and therefore require my own webspace to host. There are many I

Fiction
Monday, 03 March 2014 00:00

And as for Fiction

Meanwhile, please support my new novel, Sleeping Demons at Unbound. The Concept is currently being developed into a TV series by Runaway Fridge Productions, with the support of the Wellcome Foundation. 

Published in Fiction

Today in Parliament

 


As expected, the appearance of James Murdoch, the Chief Executive of News International (and related to some other famous people) before the DCMS Committee today failed to produce any huge bombshells. Let's remind ourselves that the Parliamentary Committee has no real powers of subpoena, witnesses are not obliged to testify on oath, is not run by trained lawyers, and is not allowed to investigate anything that could prejudice the three ongoing police investigations.  

C-Span has the whole proceedings here

James is smart, lawyered up, and left no hostages to fortune in terms of his evidence. Tom Watson had some stellar moments, challenging James over various contradictory testimonies, naming three or four other private investigators working for News International (adding some cryptic reference to Operation Millipede), and at least landing a rhetorical blow by calling James

'the first mafia boss in history who didn't know he was running a criminal enterprise.'.

(This latter remark has caused some consternation among Watson's enemies and Murdoch's apologists - but my American friends will know that the Department of Justice IS looking at potential RICO violations by Newscorp)

All in all, another day in the ongoing Murdoch saga. As Britover puts it in an excellent rec-listed diary: Some top line people really need to face jailtime. The most senior executive of the sixteen so far arrested has been Rebekah Brooks: but though James might not feel the hand of the law on his shoulder, the media scrutiny of his performance could be just as damaging in the long run.

Unanswered Questions

 


But however evasive and well trained James is at avoiding direct questions ("I have no knowledge of that... I don't recall") there are three glaring contradictions that this appearance has underlined.

1. Someone has Misled Parliament over the information provided to James when he authorised an extraordinary 700,000 GBP payment to Gordon Taylor in a civil suit over his phone being hacked by News of the World. James' claim in his previous appearance in July that he had no knowledge of phone hacking beyond the rogue reporter Clive Goodman had been directly contradicted by evidence given by the editor of NOTW at the time, Colin Myler, and News International's chief legal adviser, Tom Crone. They claim they informed James when he made that settlement. James now claims they didn't tell him, and that they misled Parliament rather than him.

TW: Did you mislead this committee?

JM: No I did not

TW: If you didn't who did?

JM I believe his committee was given [evidence] by people without full possession of the facts or...it was economical. My own testimony has been consistent. I testify to this committee with as much clarity and transparency as I can.

TW: Was it Mr Crone [who misled the committee?]
JM: I thought it was inconsistent and

TW: So you agree he misled the committee
JM: It follows that I do. I believe their testimony was misleading and I dispute it

This is a kind of either/or argument that the Committee will comment on: both accounts cannot be true.

2. How can an Effective Chief Executive be so ineffectual? James consistent response to the mounting evidence of extensive phone hacking, blagging and other borderline illegal activities by his staff was 'how am I supposed to know that level of detail'. Fair enough. But when you're making multimillion pound payouts to Gordon Taylor and Max Clifford, with dozens of other suits pending, surely it's your corporate duty to find out.

This is now being called the Asda Moment - 'Asda' is the UK equivalent of Walmart.

After explaining that he used to work for the supermarket chain (owned by the giant US company, Walmart) Davies registered his incredulity that Murdoch could have authorised the payment of more than £500,000 (to Taylor) without inquiring deeply into the reasons.

"It all seems so cavalier to me," said Davies. "You agree to settle cases with no real cap but a ballpark figure. You agree that a company should have a legal opinion, but you don't even ask to see the opinion when it is written."

3. A Fit and Proper Person? Next month is the shareholders meeting of BSkyB, Britain's largest pay-for-TV operator, 39.14% owned by Newscorp. Though the public outcry and online petitioning (by groups such as Avaaz) effectively stopped the full takeover of the company this summer, James still chairs the board. Our broadcast regulator, Ofcom, has a statutory duty to make sure that owners of licensed broadcasters are 'fit and proper' and can revoke a license if a director fails that test.

By the time BSkyB meets next, the DCMS committee will have ruled whether James has deceived Parliament or not.

Is being either/or a 'liar' or completely incompetent enough? Or even better - both.

In other News

 


Your intrepid reporter made a fool of himself an appearance outside Parliament for James' testimony. Bedecked like a human press pack, Brit decided to protest about the 30 years of Murdoch influence by sporting a sandwich board illustrated by fellow Kossack Eric Lewis, bearing the understated message:

Murdoch Ruined my Life.

Above you can see him above talking to a French journalist. Tonight he will appear on Al Jazeera. Below he joins members of the Avaaz campaign also picketing parliament.

When it's processed, I'll also post a video of him picketing Portcullis House where James was supposed to arrive, only to be stopped by a policeman and told (much to his shock and amazement) that no protests or placards are allowed within a kilometre of Parliament without prior approval, and I could be arrested. I told the very polite and helpful officer that I wasn't protesting, merely advertising the book I'm writing with Eric Bad Press: Fall of the House of Murdoch. The policeman said he didn't hear that, because advertising without a licence could also earn me a night in the cells.

I'm not as brave as many in the Occupy Movement, and rapidly removed my billboards.

There will be more about the book in later posts. It will be loosely based on my Kossack series of diaries, and focus on the stellar 'crowd sourced' journalism, reportage and activism of my fellow bloggers. It will also be crowd sourced in funding, so we'll be hitting back at the command and control modus operandi of the main stream media both in form and content.

Meanwhile join me below to discuss what you make of this latest chapter in the FOTHOM saga. And do contribute to the dedicated Bad Press: Fall of the House of Murdoch website if you can

Published in Blogs

Links and Contact Details

Live Tweeting

Over the last few years I've created some attention with my live coverage of the phone hacking trial in London, the most expensive and longest concluded criminal trial in British history. There are various accounts and articles about this on the web, including a radio play. My Twitter feed can be found here, and a collation of evidence from the trial, and all my live tweets, can be found at my Fothom Wordpress blog. There's also a Flipboard magazine and a Facebook Page. My Klout ranking is here.

More Journalism and Books

Various journalistic articles of mine are scattered throughout the web. There's some kind of portfolio at Muckrack. The most extensive reporting is for the Daily Beast and Newsweek, but there's more at the New Statesman, the New Republic, Aeon etc. I have two non fiction books published in the last year: The Fall of the House of Murdoch, available through Unbound or Amazon, and Beyond Contempt: the Inside Story of the Phone Hacking Trial, available via Canbury Press or also on Amazon. I am currently contributing to a new site for open source journalism, called Bellingcat, and advisor (along with Sir Harry Evans and Bill Emmott) to an exciting new crowdfunded journalism startip Byline

Getting in Contact

My generic email is my first name at peterjukes.com. That should get through to me pretty quickly. My Linked In profile is here. For non journalistic inquiries, for television stage and film, contact Howard Gooding at Judy Daish Associates. Examples of my television work can be found on IMDB. This links to the site for my forthcoming musical, Mrs Gucci. My radio plays can be found in various audiobook formats on Amazon and elsewhere.

 

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