PCC rejects teacher's complaints

By Sarah Lagan

Complaints against the Daily Mirror and the Worksop Guardian over
articles and pictures they published about a teacher’s suspension after
her employers found naked photographs of her have been rejected by the
Press Complaints Commission.

The Mirror printed a headshot of the complainant from one of the
photos on 15 January 2005 and the Worksop Guardian published a topless
picture with her breasts obscured a week later.The teacher complained
the articles were misleading in breach of Clause 1, accuracy and
intrusive in breach of Clause 3, privacy. She said the images had not
previously been in the public domain and publication was not in the
public interest. She also complained the articles led readers to
believe she had willingly broadcast the images. She believed that their
publication had led to her suspension.

The Mirror argued that the
article related to her suspension and was therefore a valid newspaper
story.The Guardian contended its article was in the public interest and
the complainant’s boyfriend had put the images into the public domain.
They had been published in two nationals a week before.

The PCC
said there was controversy in the teacher’s professional conduct and so
publication of the story was legitimate. It added that the Mirror had
published only a headshot of the teacher and had avoided gratuitously
humiliating her. It also did not think the article suggested she
intended for the image to appear.

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