200 pages


ISBN: 978-1-903070-79-6

News of the World?

Peter Burden


Fake sheikhs and royal trappings

Do the British people get the press the ‘red-tops’ think they deserve? Or are the tabloids’ pious protestations of public interest really just a self-serving attempt to halt declining circulation?

Peter Burden examines the News of the World’s performance – with its Fake Sheikh and the illegal mobile phone tapping that led to a jail sentence for royal reporter Clive Goodman and the resignation of the editor. He also highlights the paper’s hypocrisy when Mazher Mahmood, the Fake Sheikh, was himself unmasked.

This is a book for everyone concerned about standards in British tabloid journalism and privacy rights and the debate about the public interest versus the interest of the public.






‘A well-documented exposure of underhand tactics, gross intrusion and embarrassing cock-ups’

Derek Jameson, former News of the World editor



Peter Burden

Before becoming a full-time author, Peter Burden worked as a restaurant troubadour, fashionista, frustrated race-horse owner and a writer of radio jingles.

His first novel Rags, published in 1987 and based on his experiences in the fashion trade, was described by the Mail on Sunday as ‘a splendidly lively whiz through the fashion fringes of the Swinging Sixties’. It was followed by several more novels, including collaborations in turf fiction with John Francome. Peter was later responsible for transforming Jenny Pitman into a best-selling novelist, ghosting three best sellers for her. He also ghosted the posthumous autobiography of Sixties heart-throb David Hemmings.

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