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Media Regulation

The Editors’ Code is an example of internal regulation. A code of conduct aimed at journalists specifically. It is created by the Journalism industry itself. A form of self regulation, where they decide the rules themselves. It is an ethical code- about morals and values (dos and don’ts).

The Editors’ Code covers 16 areas, 8 of these are:

  • Privacy
  • Harassment
  • Children
  • Children in sex cases
  • Hospitals
  • Reporting crime
  • Clandestine devices and subterfuge
  • Payment to criminals

These are areas where there are strong ethical rules however sometimes journalists can break these rules if the topic is in the public interest. For e.g. programmes like Watchdog.

Clause 3- Privacy

It is unacceptable for a photograph to be taken of an individual without their consent in a private place. Everyone is entitled to be respected for their private life within their home, family, health etc. Invading people’s privacy is disrespectful when in a private place. However, if an individual is on a private property where they can be easily photographed or seen, they could expect their privacy to be limited.

The only time invading one’s privacy is acceptable is when it is in the public interest and if it is affecting someone or harming them.

An example of a celebrity who sued the media because of invading their privacy is 50 Cent in 2009 for WorldstarHipHop using his image to promote without his consent.

“They plastered his image like a banner on their homepage, which 50 Cent claimed increased traffic to the site and gave the impression that he was affiliated with them.” http://hiphopdx.com/news/id.28082/title.50-cent-wins-ruling-against-worldstarhiphop-com

This is also breaking the Defamation Law as WorldstarHipHop gave the wrong impression of 50 Cent to their audience.

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