As a trade website for journalists, HoldtheFrontPage is committed to the highest editorial standards, but sometimes mistakes can occur.
HoldtheFrontPage is a member of the Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO) and abides by the Editors’ Code of Practice. The Code of Practice states that Editors must maintain in-house procedures to resolve complaints swiftly. This page sets out HoldtheFrontPage’s internal complaints process.
Who can make a complaint and what can they complain about?
Anyone can make a complaint about any story carried on HoldtheFrontPage. Complaints must be made in writing by contacting:
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Alternatively complaints can be emailed to [email protected] marked FTAO Paul Linford, Publisher.
Complaints should be made within 12 months of the article in question being published online.
What happens when someone makes a complaint?
All complaints to HoldtheFrontPage are handled by the Publisher, Paul Linford.
On receiving a complaint, it will be reviewed to identify the grounds for the complaint and whether or not the complaint relates to an issue that HoldtheFrontPage can address.
If a complainant makes a complaint that appears to raise a potential issue under the Editors’ Code, we will inform them of the existence of the Code (if they haven’t already mentioned it), as well as providing contact details for IPSO.
All complaints will be acknowledged within seven days.
How will we respond to complaints?
The Publisher will be responsible for replying to the complainant. There are three main options available to us in responding to a complaint:
- to defend HoldtheFrontPage’s journalism
- to agree that something has gone wrong and that it needs to be fixed
- to decide that nothing has gone wrong but it is still the right thing to do to offer to take action in response to the complaint
If we decide to try to resolve a complaint, there are many different courses of action which we can offer to make to a complainant, including:
- Amendments to online articles, corrections or clarifications
- Private or public apologies
- Removal of articles or pictures from your website
- Deletion of internally held records and archives
- Publication of additional news coverage/follow-up stories
- An assurance in relation to future news coverage or conduct
- Publishing a reader article in response to the article that was the subject of the original complaint
- A good explanation of the reasons why something was done or printed (or why an error occurred)
- An assurance that relevant training will be provided to staff
A response will be sent to the complaint within 14 days. If this is not possible, a holding response will be sent to the complainant explaining when the full response is likely to be sent.
All records relating to the complaint will be kept for a period of three years.
What if the complainant is unhappy with our response?
If the complainant is unhappy with the response from HoldtheFrontPage, the complainant can make a complaint to the Independent Press Standards Organisation.
IPSO is an independent body which handles complaints from members of the public about the newspapers, magazines and websites it regulates.
IPSO can consider complaints about editorial matters and complaints must be made under the Editors’ Code of Practice. There is more information about how to make a complaint to IPSO here: https://www.ipso.co.uk/make-a-complaint/
Complainants and publishers can call IPSO for advice on complaints handling or on compliance with the Code on 0300 123 2220 or email [email protected]
What happens if a complaint comes to IPSO?
IPSO can accept complaints up to 12 months after publication of an article and complainants must make complaints under the Editors’ Code of Practice.
When a complaint comes to IPSO, it reviews the complaint to make sure that it:
- discloses a possible breach of the Code;
- is from a first party, or third party in the case of an accuracy complaint;
- is about a publication IPSO regulates; and
- is about an article published in the last twelve months.
If the complaint raises a possible breach of the Editors’ Code, and the complainant has not previously complained to HoldtheFrontPage, IPSO will generally pass the complaint to the publisher, who will seek to resolve the matter directly with the complainant. This is called the ‘referral period’.
The referral period usually lasts for no more than 28 days. At any point during the process we can refer a complaint back to IPSO if we feel that we will not be able to resolve the complaint.
If IPSO investigates a complaint, we will respond to all correspondence within seven days and will abide by any decisions made by IPSO.