Mis en cause
Résumé de la plainte
refuse de faire paraître la lettre ouverte du plaignant, alors qu’elle gaspille
de l’espace en publiant des photos insignifiantes ou même malhonnêtes. Ainsi,
le 15 novembre 1985, afin de susciter la pitié et d’exciter ses lecteurs, The
Gazette publie une photo «montée» représentant une jeune femme couverte de boue
à la suite d’une éruption volcanique en Colombie.
Griefs du plaignant
completed my study of your letter of January 10 last.
letter you were complaining on the one hand against The Gazette’s not
publishing your letter of October 10, 1985 in reply to another
letter-to-the-editor you were in disagreement with.
other hand, you were reproaching the newspaper’s having only ont half-page for
readers letters while wasting space on photo-trivia, some being, in your opinion,
«downright, dishonest and deceiftful», especially the one int the November 15,
1985 issue showing a partially-clad women being rescued from volcano torrent of
ashes and debris in Columbia. According to you, this photo was «posed,
rehearsed and set up to arouse the « pity » and titillation of the male
reader» and «contrived to find some thing beautiful in the midst of terror and
I have to reject your complaint as unfounded for the following reasons:
First, concerning the non-publication of your letter-to-the-editor, I must remind to you that no one has an acquired right to the pages of a newspaper. Even if newspapers have a duty to encourage public access and promote the free circulation of ideas and expression of the largest possible number of points of view, this is still a matter of their editorial discretion. They can even refuse to publish some letters on condition however that their refusal is not motivated by a parti pris, enmity or a desire to silence information of public interest because it is contrary to the editor’s point of view or might harm some private interest.
Editorial discretion applies in the same way to the publication of photographs, as far as the illustration of information respects the ethics of journalism, e.g. is complete and authentic, does not distort information and abstains prejudices, sensationalism, preconceived opinion or any form of discrimination. In the occurrence, the Council esteems that The Gazette’s publication of photographs is in accordance with these principes.
Analyse de la décision
- C08A Choix des textes
- C13B Manipulation de l’information