Press Ombudsman says independent system works

Tue, Nov 13, 2012, 00:00

The Press Ombudsman Prof John Horgan has said that in his experience readers whose complaints have merit get satisfaction when the redress mechanism operates swiftly and fairly, and when the press applies the same standards of accountability to itself that it expects of others.

"The key word here is "independence", and it is the benchmark against which any system must ultimately be judged. This is because it is also the key to public acceptability of any such system. A reputation for independence is not acquired easily or quickly in today's world, but it is within our grasp," he said yesterday.

Prof Horgan was addressing a seminar in Belfast organised by the Society of Editors. It has more than 400 members in UK newspapers, magazines, broadcasting and other groups.