MediaWatch

BBC to release iPhone apps, Brangelina win damages from News of the World, and Jay-Z’s photography c

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Celebrities are big in the news today, with Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt accepting damages from the News of the World after the paper falsely claimed that the couple were separating, and even went as far as to suggest the pair were negotiating a divorce settlement and custody of their children.

The rapper Jay-Z has also hit the headlines, as it has been revealed that photographers covering his recent appearance at the Wireless Festival were asked to sign away their copyright to the image in return for access. The NUJ has condemned the practice and urged photographers not to sign such contracts.

The BBC Trust has given the go-ahead for the corporation to roll out a series of smartphone applications that aim to provide "easier access" to the BBC's news and sport coverage. The news app will be launched on 23 July, despite fears expressed by other organisations that the BBC's free software will distort the burgeoning market.

An online freedom advocacy group has condemned Ofcom's draft file-sharing code, saying it does not address the problem of creating a "chain of evidence" in file-sharing cases and fails to comply with the details of the Digital Economy Act 2010, the legislation that requires the regulator to reduce file-sharing in the first place.

ITN has signed a deal with AOL to provide video packages for the web portal. The videos will mainly feature highlights from ITN's news coverage, but will also include showbiz and sports coverage.

And from the commentators today:

HoldtheFrontPage writes of a regional newspaper group that will be digitising its 150-year-old archive after receiving a heritage Lottery grant. The funding will make it possible for readers to browse 26,000 pages of newspapers in a free-to-view website.

Roy Greenslade points out the front cover of the current issue of the National Enquirer and says it shows that "there are tabloids more vulgar than those in Britain". The cover features pictures of Lisa Marie Presley and Lindsey Lohan, and asks: "Who'll die first!"

Nicholas Carr, for Nieman Reports, takes an in-depth look at the "very different way of reading and thinking" that the web has engendered. And he argues: "If serious journalism is going to survive as something more than a product for a small and shrinking elite, news organisations will need to do more than simply adapt . . . They're going to have to be a counterweight to the net."

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