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Torin Douglas Torin Douglas | 10:55 UK time, Friday, 7 January 2011

I'm the BBC's media correspondent and this is my brief selection of what's going on.

The Guardian says the BBC will cut short a controversial cot death story in EastEnders that looks set to become its most complained-about plotline to date. More than 6,000 complaints have been made about episodes in which Ronnie Branning, played by actor Samantha Womack, lost her baby James and swapped him for Kat and Alfie Moon's newborn son, Tommy. Campaigning website Mumsnet described it as cynical and ill-informed.

The Daily Mail says EastEnders star Samantha Womack showed the strain over her exit from the soap as she arrived at her north London home last night. It says: "The BBC is engulfed in a fierce row over ethical standards over its decision to screen the harrowing plot. As complaints about the show reached more than 6,000, it was sensationally claimed that its screenwriters are in revolt over the storyline."

Amid the row over the EastEnders cot-death storyline, Andrew Billen argues in The Times that soap actors should take a stand against extreme plots.

The Guardian says the Metropolitan police faces calls for an independent review of its investigation into the News of the World phone-hacking scandal, following the suspension of assistant editor Ian Edmondson. The former home secretary Alan Johnson has called for an independent inquiry and Ed Balls branded the affair as increasingly "murky".

Peter Oborne says in the Daily Telegraph the suspension of Ian Edmondson adds to the pressure on Andy Coulson, the former editor of the News of the World, and on David Cameron, who hired him as his director of communications. He writes: "Supposing that these allegations are true - and it is only fair to stress that they are far from proven - then matters now look very bleak for Coulson. The situation is grim for the Prime Minister. It was he who personally hired the former News of the World journalist, and in the knowledge of the circumstances in which he had left the paper."

The BBC reports Toy Story 3 was the top-grossing film at the box office in the UK and Ireland in 2010 taking £73.8m, according to figures released by Screen International.

The BBC's newspaper review says most papers celebrate what the Guardian describes as "England's finest hour" - the 3-1 victory in the Ashes series which was sealed in the early hours of the morning.

Links in full

Guardian | EastEnders to shorten cot death plot as complaints pass 6,000
Daily Mail | Womack shows strain after being verbally attacked
Times | Cot death, EastEnders and the last taboo
Guardian | Fresh calls to reopen News of the World phone-hacking inquiry
Peter Oborne | Telegraph | David Cameron is a pretty straight sort of guy - but now he has to prove it
BBC | Toy Story 3 tops 2010 box office
BBC | Newspaper review

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