Discontent within the editorial department of the Telegraph appears to be deepening after several journalists at the paper voiced criticism of the publications prioritisation of commercial interests over editorial ethics in the wake of an outspoken resignation of its chief political commentator, Peter Oborne.
Speaking to the BBC on condition of anonymity the journalists echoed many of the concerns raised their erstwhile colleague that the paper had treated HSBC with kid gloves to protect revenue, adding that stories concerning Russia, China and RBS had also been impacted.
Historically publications have operated a clear division between sales and editorial staff to prevent undue influence but more than a dozen Telegraph journalists have now said those systems have failed – citing the example of a scathing two star review of Despicable Me 2 which was subsequently upped to three stars following agitation from the film’s distributor.
The latest claims come as the NUJ issued a survey to all editorial staff working for the paper, inviting them to comment, in confidence, on working conditions at the title.
Laura Davison, NUJ national organiser, said: “This survey will give staff an opportunity to voice their concerns anonymously about these changes and wider issues. Wherever they work, journalists should be properly protected from the risk of commercial pressure at the proprietors’ behest.”
The Telegraph has refused to comment on the latest allegations.