I have no argument with any of the remarks made by Mr Justice Eady
in his judgment against The Guardian in the libel action brought by
Colonel Jonathan Campbell-James. However, since those comments included
references to The Guardian’s corrections and clarifications column,
which you reported last week, I would like to make a few points.
judge’s remarks about the juxtaposition of the apology and other,
minor, corrections are, of course, being carefully considered. There
are there a number of ways to give prominence to an apology in the
corrections column, for example, cross-referring to it in the paper,
putting it in bold, or even devoting the column to it. These options
should have been considered in this case.
However, The Guardian
remains the only national daily that systematically publishes
corrections – and the only one to publish them on its leader page, the
most important page in the paper.
In a recent analysis, covering
a whole year, 83 per cent of The Guardian’s corrections appeared within
a week of the original complaint. Less than one per cent took longer
than a month to reach publication.
I still believe The Guardian system compares favourably with what happens on any other newspaper.
Ian Mayes readers’ editor The Guardian