Defying authority launched the career of troublemaking journalist Jules Mattsson

By Matthew Brannen 

Fresh from reporting on US Elections for ITN, Jules Mattsson comes to Journalism Week used to holding powerful people to account.

In 2010 he hit the headlines when recordings of his arguments with Metropolitan Police officers over his right to take photos of an Armed Forces Day parade and his subsequent arrest went viral.

He had no idea his arrest would be such a career-defining moment, particularly as he was only 15 years old at the time.

Nigel Green, lecturer in journalism, who invited Jules to speak to students said: “My hope is that he will both inspire students by showing what they can do at a young age and also teach them that they must know their law and, at times, be willing to stand their ground and protest their basic rights.”


Now a freelance journalist at ITN, early in his career Jules had got the attention of Scotland Yard and found his way into their secret files on troublesome journalists.

When in 2014 The Times newspaper gained access to these files through a Freedom of Information request, Jules was one of the six journalists who took the Police to court.

The case forced them to destroy the information which included details on the journalists’ sexual orientation, appearance, family backgrounds, contents of pockets when searched and lists of freelance clients.

Since December 2014, before moving to ITN, Jules was deputy news editor for, which sells video shot by everyday people to the world’s media.

Jules also works as an organiser for I’m a Photographer, Not a Terrorist (PHNAT), which is a campaign group that grew up in response to police surveillance carried out on photographers and journalists.

PHNAT was founded to campaign against attempts to curtail the rights of anyone to take photographs in public places.

Jules will be speaking at 10.45am on Wednesday, November 16.


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