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PCC - Buscombe defends PCC's failure to hold inquiry on Madeleine McCann coverage

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PCC - Buscombe defends PCC's failure to hold inquiry on Madeleine McCann coverage

Post by Guest on 29.07.11 17:12

Old article but this is the lady who has resigned today.

Press Complaints Commission

Buscombe defends PCC's failure to hold inquiry on Madeleine McCann coverage

MPs say it is an 'indictment on the PCC's record' that it stayed silent while newspapers were apparently breaching its code


Chris Tryhorn guardian.co.uk,

Wednesday 24 February 2010 15.40 GMT

Baroness Buscombe: said the PCC had held 'numerous discussions internally' about the McCann case. Baroness Buscombe, the chairman of the Press Complaints Commission, today defended the regulator's failure to launch an inquiry into press coverage of the disappearance of Madeleine McCann in 2007.

Buscombe, who took up her role in April last year, was speaking after the House of Commons culture, media and sport select committee criticised the PCC for staying silent for 10 months after McCann went missing while newspapers were apparently breaching its code of practice.

"In any other industry suffering such a collective breakdown ... any regulator worth its salt would have instigated an inquiry," the MPs said in their report. "It is an indictment on the PCC's record, that it signally failed to do so."

But Buscombe said the PCC had been constrained to act because the McCann family had not made a formal complaint to the watchdog about newspaper coverage.

The McCanns instead took legal action that resulted in a £550,000 payout from Express Newspapers, a private settlement with Associated Newspapers and an apology from the News of the World.

"It's very important to put it in context," Buscombe told The Media Show on BBC Radio 4 today.

"What actually happened was that as soon as the story broke, the PCC was very much in touch with the McCann family and repeatedly offered to help.

"The McCanns and the PCC over the months that followed were in touch and indeed Gerry McCann in this inquiry actually praised the PCC for helping very much in terms of privacy matters relating to their other children."

Buscombe said the PCC had held "numerous discussions internally" about the McCann case.

"The difficulty that it had was that it's very difficult for a self-regulatory body such as ours to actually pre-empt and decide in some ways whether a headline or statements that are being made are something that we should be tackling without proper engagement of the complainants.

"And we did say that there were lessons to be learnt from that, absolutely. We just think it's regrettable in some ways that the McCann family didn't actually come to us for us to be able to act on their behalf."

She said that in the case of suicides in Bridgend, south Wales, the PCC "did a huge amount ... on a daily basis almost".

"The PCC made it clear back in 2007 that there were definitely lessons to be learnt," she added. "Since I've come on board I have been very clear that I believe there are ways that we could improve our accountability and our transparency."

Buscombe said the PCC had initiated an independent review of its governance and was receiving a record number of complaints. "There is no question that we're not toothless," she added.

It would be a "dangerous route" to put PCC on a statutory footing, Buscombe said. "I'm actually very keen that we do all we can to beef up our powers but in a way that makes sure we remain completely and utterly independent of the state. The day we talk about press regulation funded and police by the state, our democracy is definitely at risk."

She added that more people used the PCC to handle privacy cases than went through courts, "because we are able to handle things very quickly, very responsibly".

• To contact the MediaGuardian news desk email editor@mediaguardian.co.uk or phone 020 3353 3857. For all other inquiries please call the main Guardian switchboard on 020 3353 2000.


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Re: PCC - Buscombe defends PCC's failure to hold inquiry on Madeleine McCann coverage

Post by Guest on 29.07.11 17:17

[quote]

But Buscombe said the PCC had been constrained to act because the McCann family had not made a formal complaint to the watchdog about newspaper coverage.

The McCanns instead took legal action that resulted in a £550,000 payout from Express Newspapers, a private settlement with Associated Newspapers and an apology from the News of the World.



Wouldn't this be your first option, to contact the PCC.

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Re: PCC - Buscombe defends PCC's failure to hold inquiry on Madeleine McCann coverage

Post by Guest on 29.07.11 17:25

PCC confirms Baroness Buscombe is to step down

Chair will not seek to extend her three-year term, after criticism of her handling of the News of the World phone-hacking affair

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2011/jul/29/pcc-baroness-buscombe-to-step-down

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Re: PCC - Buscombe defends PCC's failure to hold inquiry on Madeleine McCann coverage

Post by Guest on 29.07.11 17:27

candyfloss wrote:Wouldn't this be your first option, to contact the PCC.

Would they have got money doing that?

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Re: PCC - Buscombe defends PCC's failure to hold inquiry on Madeleine McCann coverage

Post by pauline on 30.07.11 14:40

the book says

'as we did not want to make enemies of the major media organisations, we decided to keep this (ie legal action) as an absolute last resort.'

She says she met with Adam Tudor and partners from Carter-Ruck who went thro the pros and cons of taking legal action. She does not say if the lawyers suggested the Press complaints commission which they surely must have done as a first step with legal action to follow if appropriate.

She says they took the case on a no win, no fee basis which made our decision (to take the case) 'a lot easier.'

She also says she could have successfully sued ALL the national papers but 'we didn't want to spend the time and energy on wars of attrition like these.'

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Re: PCC - Buscombe defends PCC's failure to hold inquiry on Madeleine McCann coverage

Post by lj on 30.07.11 14:50

Yep, typical Kate. She goes for the easy money, not a single deeper thought.

____________________
"And if Madeleine had hurt herself inside the apartment, why would that be our fault?"  Gerry

http://pjga.blogspot.co.uk/?m=0

http://whatreallyhappenedtomadeleinemccann.blogspot.co.uk/

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