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    Media mogul Murdoch's 'Sky dataset' swallow poses 'grave threat'

    This is a discussion on Media mogul Murdoch's 'Sky dataset' swallow poses 'grave threat' within the Sky news and announcements forums, part of the SkyUser Announcements category; https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/0...over_concerns/ UK peers want ICO to ensure info cannot be misused The proposed £11.7bn takeover of Sky by Rupert Murdoch's ...

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      Media mogul Murdoch's 'Sky dataset' swallow poses 'grave threat'

      https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/0...over_concerns/
      UK peers want ICO to ensure info cannot be misused


      The proposed £11.7bn takeover of Sky by Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox is a "grave threat" to the democratic process, members of the UK's House of Lords have claimed.

      In a letter to The Observer newspaper, six peers have said that Fox – which currently owns 39 per cent of Sky – could gain too much access to one of the "largest and sophisticated datasets in the country".

      The media giant has the TV viewing, internet and phone records of 13 million households, which the peers argue could be misused for political ends.

      The letter says that if that information should "fall into the hands of an owner with an appetite for political leverage, the temptations and opportunities for misuse become very great indeed".

      Filmmaker and Labour peer David Puttnam is leading the charge, and told The Observer that the deal would give "unregulated access" to the dataset.

      "With that information, people can be individually targeted with advertisements personalised to them. And we have this unbelievable situation where we have no regulation of political advertisements, so a party can tell any lie they want," Puttnam is quoted as saying.

      He added: "I do see this as a very grave threat to our democratic process."

      The peers say that the Information Commissioner's Office should confirm that data cannot be misused before any decision is made on the deal – which has also been referred to the Competition and Markets Authority regulator.

      The letter taps into growing concerns about the influence of fake news and political bots in election campaigns, as well as the way information on voters is used by political parties and their supporters.

      Earlier this year, the ICO launched a probe into the way political parties use personal information to run targeted campaigns, which is due to report by the end of the year.


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      Re: Media mogul Murdoch's 'Sky dataset' swallow poses 'grave threat'

      Get your tin-foil hats ready!
      Faraday cages in every home, required!
      Please note the views and recommendations in my posts are my own and in no way reflect the views of Sky

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      Re: Media mogul Murdoch's 'Sky dataset' swallow poses 'grave threat'

      Culture secretary keeps Rupert Murdoch waiting over Sky deal
      https://www.theguardian.com/business...-karen-bradley
      Karen Bradley says she is still ‘minded to’ refer takeover to competition regulator, but needs more time to consider submissions

      Rupert Murdoch’s bid to take over Sky has been dealt a blow after the culture secretary said she needs more time to review submissions opposing the £11.7bn deal.

      Karen Bradley said she had “hoped” to have been able to make a final decision on whether to ask the Competition Markets Authority to investigate the deal before parliament breaks up for summer on Friday.

      However, Bradley said that she has received “tens of thousands of representations”, many of which she acknowledged duplicated each other, that needed to be looked at.

      “A final decision can only be made after fully considering all relevant evidence on both the plurality and commitment to broadcasting grounds,” she said. “Given the consultation only closed on Friday there has not been time to consider all the representations.”

      James and Lachlan Murdoch, as well as Fox’s lawyers Allen & Overy, have written last-minute letters arguing that Bradley has a duty to expedite referring the deal to the CMA before the parliamentary summer break, which runs until 5 September.

      Bradley said she is still “minded to” refer the bid to the CMA to investigate on media plurality grounds, but she also said she will consider whether to ask it to look at if the Murdochs will adhere to broadcasting standards in the UK.

      Media regulator Ofcom, on which Bradley has based her decisions to date, has said it found no grounds to ask the CMA to look at issues including the sexual harassment scandal at Fox News and issues relating to phone hacking.

      Opponents including Ed Miliband and Vince Cable, longstanding critics of the Murdochs, have argued that not making the issue of broadcasting standards part of the CMA review could leave Bradley’s decision open to a judicial review.

      Bradley said she expects to deliver her final decision on the grounds on which to refer the deal in “the coming weeks”, a timeline that will provide Fox with some succour.

      Given the CMA can take from 24 to 36 weeks to reach a conclusion Fox was keen not to have to wait until parliament returns on 5 September to officially hear that the deal is to be referred and for the investigation clock to start then.

      In an effort to speed up the process, Fox decided not to submit an improved offer to spin off Sky News, knowing it would have significantly held up the consultation stage of the process, which is headed for referral in any case.

      “I expect to be in a position to come to a final decision on referral, including in respect to the broadcasting standards grounds, in the coming weeks and potentially during summer recess,” she said. “That may mean I have to make a decision before parliament returns.”

      The deputy Labour leader and shadow culture secretary, Tom Watson, chastised Bradley, saying that she did not need to operate on Fox’s corporate timeline and said there was no need to come back with a decision while parliament was in recess.

      Bradley reminded him that she is in a quasi-judicial role and that under the Enterprise Act there is a “legitimate need for a prompt decision without undue delay”.

      She added that for broadcasting standards to be made part of the CMA investigation she would need to see significant new evidence.

      “Nothing I have seen so far has changed my mind but I am going to look at all representations I have received,” Bradley said.

      “I will look at them all to see what evidence they provide. Ofcom’s report on broadcasting standards was clear, unequivocal, there were no grounds on which I can refer. I am therefore looking [to see if there is any] new evidence, new substantive evidence.”

     

     

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