NOTW Investigative Journalism

The Hollywood Reporter has this bemused account of a US journalist’s experiences as celebrity-bait for the News of the World:

Early on, the job entailed transcribing audiotapes that sleazy women made of footballers with whom they had sex. The girls would set up famous players, then sell them out to the paper in order to get some cash and fame. The recordings usually consisted of extended, loud orgasms; I would swear they were faking it as I transcribed the grunts and groans for my editors.

I was soon switched over to harder reporting, and my next assignment took me to Brighton, where I was instructed very specifically to catch Mike Tyson in a cocaine orgy. Editors sent me to a grungy video shop above a pub in East London, where I collected a tiny “pen cam,” signing it out on an account the paper maintained there. Back at the NOTW offices, staffers stitched it onto the lining of a hideous pine-green windbreaker four sizes too big for me. They aimed the camera out of a front button.

Sick over the task but afraid I’d be shipped home if I didn’t come through, I managed to locate Tyson at a hotel, befriend him and his posse and take some photos of him with strippers with the pen cam. I passed the info on to a fellow reporter and cried when it hit the paper the next day. The editors’ embellishments detailed three-way sex and other activities I had not witnessed. They made it look as if Tyson was in the midst of an orgy in the lobby.

Confessions of a News of the World reporter– The Hollywood Reporter

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