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Ipso Considering Pilot Arbitration Process

Tuesday, October, 6, 2015

The Independent Press Standards Organization (IPSO) is determining whether or not to create a pilot arbitration service.  The organization recently held a board meeting and discussed the results of public consultation.  The addition of arbitration services was suggested by the Leveson Report and would create a forum to arbitrate legal and civil claims filed against magazines and newspapers in Great Britain.


The arbitration process would serve as an alternative dispute resolution process that would help those involved in disputes resolve problems before legal action is taken in cases of libel and/or invasion of privacy.


Some attorneys familiar with the recommendation are leery of supporting the service and have listed their concerns in the 21 consultation submissions given to IPSO.  The board stated it will consider the arguments for and against arbitration and make a decision at its November 26th meeting. 


Spokespeople from IPSO said arbitration would be one of the features that could help regulators seeking recognition under the royal charter created by the government following the Leveson Report and would give members protection from exemplary damages and costs in the Crime and Courts Act 2013 that will soon be in effect.  IPSO’s founders have made it clear the organization will not seek recognition and further pointed out that IPSO does not regulate the Guardian or the Independent, though it would like to see those papers joint the organization.


The ultimate goal of IPSO is to make it easier for people to file complaints against publishers.  The organization wants to create advisory guidance for the press about how to handle certain issues, such as facial disfigurement issues.  They handled a complaint recently when a facial disfigurement organization filed a complaint against a paper for a story discussing worst mug shots.