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These are the stories we’re watching this week. Here is your Weekly Wire:

  • Recently released draft recommendations to the U.K. government call for increasing the maximum prison sentence for government whistleblowers from two to 14 years. Also proposed: Expanding the definition of espionage to include the obtaining of information as well as passing it on to, say, a journalist. The 326-page draft, a review of the 1989 Official Secrets Acts, was written by the Law Commission, an independent body studying legal reform in the U.K. Critics have called the review a “full frontal attack” on civil liberties, and said it’s aimed “squarely at Edward Snowden and The Guardian.”
  • Wall Street Journal editorial features editor Mark Lasswell was let go last week, and the Atlantic reports that it was likely over his position on President Donald Trump. The Journal’s editorial staff was split by Trump’s ascension, and the schism played out in its Opinion section, which featured both pro and anti-Trump commentary. Lasswell, who was part of the latter camp, reportedly went on book leave following a disagreement with editorial pages editor Paul Gigot over the tone of the Journal’s coverage of Trump. In a statement, Gigot said the Atlantic’s information was “false in multiple respects.”
  • Last Week Tonight with John Oliver returned to HBO last night for its fourth season. The popular talk-news-comedy show went on hiatus shortly after the American election last November, leaving a void on Facebook feeds everywhere. Despite the obvious target—about whom the first episode takes square aim—Oliver says in an interview with Wired that he doesn’t intend to dwell on Trump. “There’s a lot of low-hanging fruit with administrations like this,” he says. “You need to reach past that.” Watch it on HBO every Sunday (or just catch it on social media).
  • CBC The National reporter and Cross Country Checkup host Duncan McCue spoke today at Ryerson about the intricacies of reporting on politics and Indigenous communities in Canada. McCue, who’s Anishinaabe, is the creator of Reporting in Indigenous Communities, an online resource for journalists, and author of The Shoe Boy, a memoir of working a trapline in northern Quebec. Expect coverage of the discussion later this week on RRJ.ca.

To see more frequent updates from the RRJ, please follow us on Twitter. You can also subscribe to our weekly newsletter for more in-depth news analysis. We’ll be back with your next Weekly Wire on Monday, February 20. Expect our print edition to hit shelves this April.

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About the author

This is a joint byline for the Ryerson Review of Journalism. All content is produced by students in their final year of the graduate or undergraduate program at the Ryerson School of Journalism.

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