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Leveson Inquiry Royal Charter

Professional Publishers Association in Scotland launches petition to oppose statutory press regulation

By Angela Haggerty, Reporter

March 20, 2013 | 2 min read

The Professional Publishers Association in Scotland has voiced its opposition to any form of statutory legislation on press regulation in a letter to first minister Alex Salmond.

The association, which represents all magazine publishers in Scotland, invited members to sign the letter, which cites concern at the contents of the McCluskey report on Scottish press regulation released last week. Although the Scottish government is set to reject the McCluskey proposals, the association said the move left the outlook even more uncertain and encouraged signatures on the petition.

The letter adds further pressure to the political situation, after The Spectator and Private Eye said they would not sign up to the UK government's proposals of a royal charter. Other publications are seeking legal advice while reports of a possible boycott by newspapers have been circulating.

The PPA letter noted that the magazine industry in Scotland contributed an estimated £157m for the Scottish economy, producing over 700 consumer, B2B, customer, local authority and charity titles.

The letter said: "We are opposed to any form of statutory legislation as this will enable future political intervention, resulting in the possible influence of the press by Scottish government. We urge the Scottish government to work in conjunction with Westminster. Scotland's published magazines are widely available both internationally and throughout the UK, making one rule for all UK bodies a sensible choice."

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