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"Sorry we are unable to accept comments for legal reasons"...why?

(20 Posts)
CroissantNeuf Thu 06-Oct-11 21:30:21

Actually, I realise why they don't allow comments but why is it that a national paper has "Sorry we are unable to accept comments for legal reasons" after an article about an incident that day yet the local paper for that area is allowing people to comment on it?

missymarmite Thu 06-Oct-11 21:32:15

What paper and what article?

meditrina Thu 06-Oct-11 21:33:34

Presumably they've had different legal advice, or different arrangements/resources for moderation.

CroissantNeuf Thu 06-Oct-11 21:38:35

It was the case where the (alleged) burglar was shot during a raid on a house on the Herefordshire/Worcestershire border.

DM are not allowing comments yet the Worcester News is.

I'm just interested as I spotted this whilst reading about the incident (a friend of mine lives right by where the shot man was found).

Nancy66 Fri 07-Oct-11 07:48:52

It's usually on stories where legal proceedings are ongoing.

The worcester news site (I imagine) has very little traffice. Mail Online is one of the biggest websites in the world - therefore prosecution/defence could argue that they prejudiced a trial/case.

CroissantNeuf Fri 07-Oct-11 08:46:44

But surely, using that argument, you could say that local 'comment' would be more likely to prejudice a case as it affects the people in that area and the trial is likely to be held locally?

Snorbs Fri 07-Oct-11 09:04:14

You're right, but maybe the local paper just doesn't believe there is much chance of them being told off. Whereas the Mail has a long and ignoble history of publishing complete crap and has had its knuckles rapped and so could be a bit more cautious.

soandsosmummy Fri 07-Oct-11 10:05:38

If the matter is before the courts or legal proceedings are likely then comment should not really be invited as it may prejudice a case. In such cases only the barest minimum ca be reported until such time as a verdict is reached.

For example a report that said "Fred Bloggs is accused of being a loan shark" might be prejudiced if someone commented "yes I know Fred Bloggs he glassed my mate in the face last year because she couldn't pay up". Even if the comment was true it would prejudice the case if someone who subsequently became a member of a jury were to see it.

CroissantNeuf Fri 07-Oct-11 10:37:39

Theres been an interesting development with this story in that the police have found a cannabis farm at the house of the man who was burgled and then arrested for the alleged shooting of one of the burglars.

Interestingly enough the Worcester News have now got rid of the previous comments by readers and are not permitting comments on the story .

Strange that.

snorbs - "a long and ignoble history of publishing complete crap" -but isn't that also what local newspapers are renowned for, or is that just our local papers who never manage to get things right, or misquote, or get names wrong etc wink

Snorbs Fri 07-Oct-11 11:27:03

Yes, but by virtue of their limited circulation local papers tend to fly under the radar of the PCC in a way that the Mail could only dream of.

CroissantNeuf Fri 07-Oct-11 11:38:57

Very true.

The Mail etc do tend to bring it upon themselves a lot of the time.....for example, at least the local paper didn't put a big 'Guilty' verdict up for Amanda Knox!

sportsfanatic Fri 07-Oct-11 15:33:28

It's as lifetime ago since I trained on a local paper but normally regional media are very careful always to observe subjudice.

sportsfanatic Fri 07-Oct-11 15:33:54

"was" not "as" FFS

Nancy66 Fri 07-Oct-11 21:06:59

Every major news organistation in the world went with the 'guilty' banner for a few seconds until it was corrected.

Yes, but only one had already composed the entirely fictional but highly-detailed story to go with it...

Nancy66 Fri 07-Oct-11 21:22:25

No they hadn't....

onagar Fri 07-Oct-11 21:30:26

If you mean that page that described the reactions of the relatives etc to the guilty verdict I'd say those were fictional details wouldn't you?.

whomovedmychocolate Fri 07-Oct-11 21:31:22

The DM has a very strict policy on disabling comments on contentious articles.

OK so. I was just going by the article they put on their website, with the quotes from the prosecution about the guilty verdict, and the reactions from the Kercher family to the guilty verdict, and how AK was taken back to prison and put on suicide watch after the guilty verdict.

Nancy66 Fri 07-Oct-11 21:34:20

I know what you're talking about - I'm just saying the DM would not have been the only newspaper with a feature like that ready to go

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