Self-regulation: recommendations for reform

Last week the Prime Minister announced the formation of a judge-led public inquiry into journalistic practices and the relationship between the press and politicians, and the press and the police. At the same time he called for a radical reform of the current system of press self-regulation.

The Media Standards Trust has, for more than two years, been calling for just such radical reform.

In February 2009 we published a critique of the current system, titled A More Accountable Press.

In January 2010 we published our recommendations for reform of the current system, titled Can independent self-regulation keep standards high and preserve press freedom?.

These recommendations are for the reform of the current system. The Trust will also be examining other approaches to self-regulation given that both the Prime Minister and leader of the Opposition have called not for a reform of the current system but for an entirely new system.

The Media Standards Trust has, since its formation in 2006, consistently argued against State regulation of the press, but for more effective self-regulation. Over the next 2-3 years we will, along with other individuals and organisations, seek to contribute our thoughts to the judicial inquiry.