Oops. Press Council rebukes Media Watch.

This is a tad awkward…..

The Press Council has issued a statement claiming ABC’s own Media Watch has made an error in its editorial.

The story surrounds Osher Gunsberg’s successful complaint against Daily Mail Australia which posted unflattering paparazzi photos in a “Bali Belly” story.

Last week Media Watch reported the Daily Mail’s only punishment was a requirement to post Press Council findings with a link.

However the requirement was to publish a summary of the adjudication prominently for 24 hours, and link to the judgement permanently.

In a statement the Press Council’s executive director John Pender said, “Mr Gunsberg has said publicly that he was delighted with both the outcome of the Adjudication and the process leading up to it. In this case, as in all cases, the Council first tried to resolve the complaint by a consensual remedy.

“It is not part of our process for the article to be removed, but for the Adjudication to be linked
to it. This is important so that readers of the original article see that it has been subject to an
Adjudication. There is also an important public interest in raising awareness of journalists and
editors of Council decisions about responsible journalism. The Press Council does not have
the power to censor and does not wish to have that power.”

Media Watch has posted the Press Council’s objection alongside its transcript.

Executive producer Tim Latham told The Australian, “We put that up there but they are still not satisfied.

“The thrust of their statement is that people will be less likely to complain to the press council and I see no evidence of that whatsoever.”

ABC’s show has a permanent Corrections page, acknowledging “Everybody makes mistakes, including Media Watch. Our editorial and production staff do their best to check and double check facts but mistakes still occur.”

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