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Trustees finally find a voice

We are told the Trustees are “incensed” at censorship of Reuters articles on China by Refinitiv Trustees ‘incensed’ at Refinitiv censorship of Reuters in China.

Their concern is of course well justified, but more than a little ironic given that they seem to have acquiesced quietly in the separation of the most profitable part of the terminals business from Thomson Reuters to create Refinitiv in the first place.

They also waved through the Thomson takeover of Reuters in 2008 although it broke the Trust principle banning control by any one interest and ignored that company’s reputation for ruthless cost cutting. Sure enough, we have seen accelerating staff cuts in recent years and a dilution of vital breaking news resources, despite the $17 billion treasure chest from the Refinitiv sale. This has helped to disastrously widen the competitive rift between Reuters and Bloomberg.

The Trustees also seemed unconcerned by the scandalous contract between a Thomson Reuters subsidiary and the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, which has assisted inhumane policies by the Trump administration.

It is welcome that the Trustees have belatedly found their voice. Perhaps we could hear it more often from now on.  ■