Hi, I'm Ben Hazell. I used to blog here about the media, but now I work there I don't write here anymore.
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Rarely updated now, used during Journalism MA at the University of Sheffield.

Harry: "Yet herein I will imitate the sun"

Thursday, 28 February 2008
So Harry's been in Afganistan all along, the scamp.

I'm not suprised, and I'm pleased that deals were done to allow this to happen. The speed with which the newspapers have reacted, posting footage and features, suggests that they've been planning for a reveal of some kind soon, but the story was finally broken by the US mega-blog The Drudge Report.

While the BBC message boards flare with anger at the Drudge Report for breaking the news and the Chief of Staff condemns it, Drudge, clearly stung, defends himself with this quote from John Snow:

“I never thought I'd find myself saying thank God for Drudge. The infamous US blogger has broken the best kept editorial secret of recent times. Editors have been sworn to secrecy over Prince Harry being sent to fight in Afghanistan three months ago. Drudge has blown their cover. One wonders whether viewers, readers and listeners will ever want to trust media bosses again. Or perhaps this was a courageous editorial decision to protect this fine young man?”

One wonders if we should trust the integrity of Bloggers anymore.

Ten minutes later Drudge has cut the quote down to just the first sentence.

It strikes me that Drudge hasn't just blown the cover of city editors, but the secracy protecting the troops in the field. I wonder if the story would have been broken the same way if it concerned US troops. Will the Gurkhas now be taking 'I'm Harry' T-Shirts out on patrol like the troops did before his planned Iraq deployment.

It also strikes me that editors wern't "sworn to secrecy" as such; they were bought off with promises of inside access to the Prince, and made to understand the dangers of indentifying him; dangers that the papers were so quick to point out before his last planned deployment.

As for Snow, he goes on to describe it as “a gorgeously contentious issue”, suggesting he’s just enjoying the row instead of making any real ethical judgement.

Right - it's 7 O'Clock - let's see what Snow really has to say on this one.


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