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Entries in press (1)

Friday
Nov302012

Does Leveson help?

The Leveson Inquiry into the culture, practice and ethics of the press was published at the end of November. It focused on some of the many examples in which particular individuals had been hounded, defamed and their lives seriously damaged by newspaper ‘monstering’.

Individuals can sue – though it is often a risky business – but it has been pointed out that members of a group that has been vilified but not individually named don’t have that option. The example of the 96 who died at Hillsborough, their families and the fellow football supporters who survived has been given: none of them named individually as doing anything wrong but all damaged as members of the bigger group.

Lord Leveson heard evidence from a number of women’s organisations and agreed with them about “demeaning” coverage and that "what is clearly required is that any such [new] regulator has the power to take complaints from representative women’s groups".  Families Need Fathers and campaigners for non resident parents in particular, so often casually demonized, should take note.

Lord Leveson also said that consideration should be given to amending the Editor’s Code to give whatever new body is established power to intervene in cases of allegedly discriminatory reporting and “reflect the spirit of equalities legislation”.