PCC

26 05 2008

Yo!  Wassup?  Bobby G-Force is back with more media studies facts.  If you’re studying press regulation in the UK, the PCC is one of those basic concepts you need to know about.

The Press Complaints Commission is the main regulatory body for printed media in the UK.  The PCC have a Code of Practice which newspapers and magazines are supposed to keep to.  If they don’t, then they are vulnerable to complaints, which may be put to the PCC by members of the public.

The Code of Practice covers 16 areas:

1. Accuracy
2. Opportunity to reply
3. Privacy*
4. Harassment*
5. Intrusion into grief or shock
6. Children*
7. Children in sex cases*
8. Hospitals*
9. Reporting of crime*
10. Clandestine devices and subterfuge*
11. Victims of sexual assault
12. Discrimination
13. Financial journalism
14. Confidential sources
15. Witness payments in criminal trials
16. Payment to criminals*

These are not laws, but guidelines all UK newspapers and magazines are expected to abide by.  This is essentially a self-regulating system, since no paper wants to cough up compensation money, so by keeping to the Code of Practice, they are covering their bases.  Thus it is fast and, apparently, efficient.

However, they can ignore guidelines marked with an asterisk if they can demonstrate that they acted in the public interest.  For this reason, some have accused the system of being overly lenient and ineffectual, a claim the PCC are quick to argue against.

So that’s your basic PCC overview.  Booyah!

Current listening: The Prodigy, “Firestarter”.


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2 responses

26 05 2008
Will Rhodes

However, they can ignore guidelines marked with an asterisk if they can demonstrate that they acted in the public interest.

Anddddd – that just about covers everything. ;)

26 05 2008
B0bbyG

Well, quite. It’s actually pretty flawed, since they can argue their way around pretty much anything. o_0

Mind you, sometimes it works. The Daily Express recently had to cough up £550,000 damages for their Madeleine McCann false stories.




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