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With Brooks arrested, tabloid insiders open up

Jul 20, 2011 6:49:00 AM - thestate.com
With their former boss under arrest, tabloid reporters are beginning to reveal secrets of what it was like to work in Rebekah Brooks' newsrooms.

Disguises, bullying, lies dropped into copy - all were part of the pressure-cooker atmosphere that prevailed, according to former journalists who spoke to The Associated Press.

Michael Taggart, who worked at The Sun in 2003, said the paper under Brooks was marked by "ruthlessness and misogyny."

"The reporters who were prepared to subject themselves and others to the most ridicule were the ones earmarked for success," he said.

Insiders say the whatever-it-takes mantra was common across the tabloid world. But the pressure at News International - publisher of the Sun and the News of the World, the now defunct paper at the center of the phone hacking scandal - was particularly intense.

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