087/2017 Mr Jamie Thunder and The Canary
Publication: The Canary
Date of complaint: 18 October 2017
Date complaint accepted: 2 November 2017
Date of Adjudication: 13 December 2017
Relevant Clauses: Accuracy 1.1, 1.2 and 1.4 of the IMPRESS Standards Code
Outcome: Complaint Upheld. Breach of Clauses 1.1, 1.2 and 1.4. Publisher to publish a short homepage correction with a link to the full adjudication
Summary of Complaint
1.1. The Complainant is Jamie Thunder, a third party seeking to ensure the accuracy of published information. He has confirmed to IMPRESS that he is not an affected party or the representative of an affected party.
1.2. The Publisher is The Canary, a news website covering current affairs, that has been regulated by IMPRESS since 21 August 2017.
1.3. The complaint concerns the accuracy of an article and a tweet promoting it, that first appeared on The Canary at noon on 27 September 2017 with the headline “We need to talk about Laura Kuenssberg. She’s listed as a speaker at the Tory Party conference”.
1.4. IMPRESS was initially contacted by an additional 51 complainants who raised concerns about the article in question. Those complainants were directed to the Publisher’s own complaints procedure, in line with the IMPRESS Regulatory Scheme. Mr Thunder was the only complainant to complete the process of escalating his complaint to IMPRESS, following The Canary’s initial response to the complaint (reproduced in Section 3 below).
1.5.The complaint is assessed against the IMPRESS Standards Code.
The relevant clauses are:
Clause 1 (Accuracy):
1.2 Publishers must correct any significant inaccuracy with due prominence, which should normally be equal prominence, at the earliest opportunity.
1.4 Whilst free to be partisan, publishers must not misrepresent or distort the facts. Case Ref: 0087/2017 3
1.6.IMPRESS determined that the article should also be investigated under the following clause of the IMPRESS Standards Code: 1.1 Publishers must take all reasonable steps to ensure accuracy.