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Many years ago, during the first weeks of a music degree, I was in the university library researching for an essay on 16th century instrumental writing. A fellow fresher, an Indian student whose English was still not quite up to speed, asked me in a worried whisper: “Excuse me please. What is wirginals?” I showed him an illustration of the instrument in the book before me. The anxiety cleared from his face. “Ah – I see!” He smiled at his own misunderstanding. “Not like Wirgin Mary.”
The Leveson report has been a long time coming. Since 1949 there have been five inquiries into the operation of the press in Britain. On each occasion, we have heard the same kind of outcry against independent scrutiny from media barons, a narrow band of newspaper pundits and politicians who serve the rich and powerful.