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Paper Monitor

12:16 UK time, Thursday, 18 August 2011

A service highlighting the riches of the daily press.

And it's that time of year again - A-levels results day. But alas, while it's possible for the papers to report on another year that results have gone up and make predictions on the death of maths and science, the papers' coverage lacks that one vital ingredient - those pictures.

Over the years (Paper Monitor would like to think it led the charge) attention has been drawn to the penchant of the press to illustrate the annual opening of A-level results with images of pretty, (usually) blonde, girls jumping up and down, hugging each other, dominating the front pages. More often than not it's as if boys have ceased to exist.

In fact it's such a phenomenon that the wry comments on the subject of the photographs has become as much of a phenomenon in their own right, as, ahem, Paper Monitor noted a year ago.

But it's not necessarily a matter of chance - or sleazy picture editors - that it is the more photogenic students who make the front pages. The Financial Times suggests that certain public schools actually offer up their most attractive pupils to the press. Without wishing to name names - Paper Monitor's legal coffers are low - there is even an example of one schoolmaster who offered the FT journalist an invite to the annual sports day "to pick out promising candidates for A-level day pictures".

Paper Monitor waits with bated breath to see whether this cynicism makes a difference to the pictures that will appear in tomorrow's papers.

In other news, sub-editors have much fun with the news that a certain French actor urinated in front of passengers on a flight from Paris to Dublin: Daily Mirror - Depardieu's Oui-oui no-no, the Times - Gerard Depardieu's wee mistake, the Independent - The man who went 'Oui, oui!' on a plane, the Sun - Gerard Desperatedieu.

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