We find that Ofcom hasn’t, after all, been broken up into some obscure ad hoc technical committee meeting in a room in Whitehall, as some expected. It has shed a fifth of its staff, and Ed Richards’ remuneration is still twice that of David Cameron: last year, with perks, he pocketed £363,539 but generously waived a £15,000 performance bonus.
But this quintessential New Labour wonk is still there. And Ofcom is more interventionist than ever as we can see from the emails, released by the Leveson Inquiry this week, from News Corp’s chief UK envoy Fred Michel to his boss, James Murdoch.
So what happened to the axe dangling over the regulator? It’s actually wonderfully ironic.