Though the UK media scene is defined in part by a freewheeling and often partisan tabloid press with its own share of conspiracy theories, its TV news channels largely frame their coverage down the middle, with broadcasters such as the BBC and ITV maintaining high levels of public trust. Rupert Murdoch’s Fox News is no longer on air in the country after failing to generate a significant viewer base.

A big factor in this is media regulator Ofcom, which enforces rules on impartiality and accuracy for all news broadcasters. Those who breach the rules can be censured or fined — putting pressure on TV channels to play stories fairly straight…

“What the impartiality rules do is ensure you cannot have the kind of shock jock culture — [a] far right, or indeed far left, one-sided interpretation of events,” said Steven Barnett, a professor of media and communication at the University of Westminster.