The code ‘regulating’ UK MSM allows them to be racist and hateful to any group – as long as they don’t name an individual

Glaring loophole means IPSO has never upheld a racism complaint

‘Sham regulator’ IPSO allows ‘mainstream’ press to be racist with impunity

A huge loophole in the editors’ code of ‘IPSO’ – the ‘regulator’ run by the mainstream press themselves – allows ‘MSM’ editors a free hand to be racist, just as long as they don’t name an individual, as a new article by journalism expert Brian Cathcart reminds us.

The IPSO code contains a section titled ‘Discrimination’. It says:

12. Discrimination

i) The press must avoid prejudicial or pejorative reference to an individual’s, race, colour, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation or to any physical or mental illness or disability.

ii) Details of an individual’s race, colour, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, physical or mental illness or disability must be avoided unless genuinely relevant to the story.

However, as Cathcart points out in his new article for Byline Times titled “Calling out Press Racism – Has Anything Changed?”, the code only bans discrimination against an individual, not against groups. Racism against Gypsy Travellers, or black people, or Asians, or Muslims, or Jewish people as a whole is not prevented by IPSO’s code.

In the six years since its code was published,

IPSO has never upheld a complaint about discrimination on grounds of race

In one of the most notorious examples, the S*n’s former political editor Trevor Kavanagh was cleared by IPSO in 2017 after using Nazi-like language in an article about the UK’s ‘Muslim problem’ – and the specific reason given by IPSO for its decision was that ‘no individual was targeted’.

At the time, Kavanagh was an IPSO board member.

In recent weeks, the racism of the mainstream press has been highlighted by its treatment of Meghan Markle, by headlines about Black Lives Matter protesters and about black MP Claudia Webbe, as well as the usual tone of any article about black, Asian or Gypsy Traveller people. After outrage about Markle’s treatment, the Society of Editors‘ director issued a statement claiming ‘the UK media is [sic] not bigoted’, before resigning after 168 journalists of colour published a letter condemning his denial. Despite the resignation of one SoE board member in disgust and an SoE promise to prepare a new statement on resignation, there has been no further action.

Cathcart, like campaign group ‘Hacked Off’, has referred to IPSO as a ‘sham’ regulator – with Hacked Off going further to say IPSO was set up to create the ‘illusion of reform’.

Skwawkbox and other left independent outlets are regulated by IMPRESS, the UK’s only Leveson-compliant pres regulator. IPSO-regulated titles spent years trying to persuade the courts to cancel IMPRESS’s recognition as a regulator by the by the Press Recognition Panel, but ultimately abandoned the attempt and had to pay IMPRESS’s costs.

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  1. Really interesting article, well done Skwawk. I didn’t realise it was possible to malign and insult a whole group of people provided you don’t name a single individual. What hypocrisy is that? What was the article about Claudia Webbe? Surely as an individual she would have a complaint if she was insulted in racist terms.

  2. Sometimes it’s the systems themselves that cause the problems (or rather, how they can be manipulated by the wealthy aand the powerful). As for IPSO and racism (or xenophobia, homophobia, misogyny , agism/whatever), I think law and ‘lawyers’ – and neoliberalism’s obsession with ltigation and legislation, – explain the loophole.

    Financial cost or imprisonment is incurred when a ‘hate” crime is committed, and you can’t – the Elite or Establishment would argue -hate an entire race, age group, gender, lifestyle (and still be considered ‘reasonable), so (DUH!) you’re only guilt of those things when it’s expressed against an individual instance of the group/class.

    As every bent and every well-intentioned lawyer(think Howard Beckett NOT Keir Rodne Starmer, ‘forensic’ my arse) knows, to work the system, you have to know how to break, exploite and manipulate it. Neoliberal capitalism and its unhealthy veneration of the rule of law and law as an oppressive weapon of the ruling class, provides its cognoscenti with ‘loopholes’ aplenty to use.

    1. Exactly! QwertBoi look at the Farce that EHRC is/was 2019/2020! All Tory, All Zionist, All White, with investigations of Racism and Discrimination against them while we were supposed to trust their ability of Regulating OUR Equalities/Human Rights! I hope whoever investigates the abuse of Antisemitism as a weapon delves pretty deep into that clown party!
      We have still not heard ANYTHING about the Black, Muslim, Asian, Racism of which Dianne Abbott alone received more Racist Threats and Abuse than all the MPs put together, and still nothing! Loophole on Loophole on Loophole!
      Have we heard ANYTHING about the grave concern of the Danger Posed to Travellers/Gypsies/Roma People on the UK because of Government Policies yet NO! I would love to know is Government ?Tzar? for Antisemitism with his Hate for Gypsies, Travellers, Roma was on the Government Panel making these decisions at all, no doubt he was Nr1! Soon to be Government ?Tzar? against Antisemitism and for Anti-Traveller Policies!
      ALL these Regulators/Commissions/ should be run on an open source basis, Cronyism is writhe in these places, just like anything else in the hands of The Elites/Establishment/Machine! We need all these thing back in The People’s hands! These Organisations/Commissions/Regulators are required for our Security and Piece of Mind not to enable The Elites/Establishment/Machine to commit more crimes against us!

  3. Hardly surprising, our regulators are a joke, more of a revolving door for politicians than anything else. Offcom is next in the government’s sights with Paul Dacre the favoured candidate, because the BBC’s too left wing you know.

  4. The best form of newspaper regulation is – don’t buy the f*ckin’ rags, in the first place!

    1. Even if 80% of the population wisened-up to that and didn’t buy the billionaires’ newssheets (and, happily, few people buy the poison sheets than did a decade ago), the BBC would still manage to take the MSM’s toxic poison and make it ubiquitous, an intimate part of many citizens’ lifes!

      A publically-funded state broadcaster should not amplify the billionaires’ MSM (as the BBC does), it should counteract, balance and challenge it. The BBC is maybe beyond repair.

      1. How can we wake them!? I keep thinking if GE2019 did not wake them the hell up, what is it going to take!? The Psycho BoJo getting us Nuked by Putin!
        I wonder how many People on earth actually realises that we live on a tiny spinning lump of Space Debris in a tiny solar system in a Galaxy so tiny it’s not even equivalent to a speck of dust in the scale, of what our Cameras can see, of the Universe. The Universe itself could well be, like our speck of dust Galaxy, a tiny speck of dust Universe in something far bigger still that holds Billions more Universes and so on and on!
        It really is only when you study the space images of the Universe that you realise how insignificant our existence is, we are no more significant than the skin lice that lives on all humans’ skin and even less than that really, in the scale of The Universe. So I think we really should bet closer to our roots, abandon all modern Religion, Capital, Commercialism, Materialism and start living much simpler and happier lives again, respecting the Course of Nature rather than the Course of Man!

      2. Yes, you’re right, qwertboi. The BBC was never supposed to be about ratings. They did resist, but had to give in, in the end.

        Had they stuck to quality – relatively – impartial news reporting, they would have been OK. But, they allowed themselves to be dragged into it. Kuenssberg and Burley were the main culprits.

        The good news is, Burley left to go elsewhere, before Easter, so there may be light at the end of this particular tunnel.

        Politics Live had JC on, earlier this week(gasp!) – only talking about football, mind, but it’s a start.

        Channel 4 News is the only national news programme I watch. Not perfect, by any means. I’d give them 7.5 out of 10, at the moment.

    2. Exactly George!
      Boycott ALL MSM Everything, cancel contracts end send Sky/Virgin/BT boxes back! Some will protest but the kids! To me one of the cruellest things any parent could do to a child is to stick it in front of a TV!

      Start taking Boycotting Seriously if Boycotting XYZ and you spot a product from XYZ don’t just boycott that Product! Boycott the Store until they stop supplying ANY products from XYZ!
      There is a great app called BuycottApp it helps to sniff out unlabelled products.

      Stop buying THEIR SHIT!
      Stop being so Materialist over Gadgets and Cars, etc, ONLY EVER Buy What you need, then use it until it cannot be fixed or ceases to be cost-effective. Then buy the Best Quality Product based on The Lowest Price. Not the Latest S25 or iPhone etc, etc!

      If you get a Free Gift LIKE Alexa/Dot etc IT IS NOT A FREE GIFT!
      If you have a Siri/OK Google/Alexa/Dot/Ring/anything else voice activated for Leisure not Disability Need get rid!
      You literally have Bezos/Gates/FacebookBoyMan etc, etc, etc in your lounge/Bedroom/Kitchen!

      If we want a radical Change we need to start a NEED over WANT Revolution! Only have what you REALLY NEED. If its a burning desire its probably a want not a need, go out of your way to commit to your boycotts, drive the extra 2 miles to the local produce Green Grocer instead of putting that XYZ Orange/Tomatoes in your basket, thinking just this time!
      It is only We The People who can make a blind bit of difference, BUT WE HAVE TO DO IT!

      1. And I’d give Ch4 2 out of 10 for their international news. Lindsay Hilsum is a neocon, their Syria reporting, like Libya before, is a load of lies and Krishnan Guru Murthy regularly interviewed Al Qaida propagandists, calling them ‘activists’.

      2. I bet no one said that Gaza has been bombed for several night now! I bet no one said Israel attacked Syria earlier yesterday and were seen off by the Syrian Air-force and Ground to Air Missiles of which one missile, missed the Israeli Target and ended up nearly hitting the Israelis illegal Military Nuclear Site, what a pity, that would have been a great miss and hit!
        So get this, Israel attacks, missile shot at their jet misses and end up in the Dessert near The Illegal Military Nuclear Site, nonetheless it was fired in an attempt to stop Israeli jets from bombing them.
        That is then the justification for Israel the aggressor who caused the missile to be fired, to launch a night raid attack on Damascus, INCLUDING Civilian Areas!
        For shooting the Missile!
        I bet no one said about that!
        I tell you what, I am glad I am not Israeli! When Karma comes for her Payback, there are a lot of I OWE YOU’S in the 150 years of take by force, murder, terrorism, black flags, etc, etc, outstanding for her to claim!

  5. MSM’s modus operandi is to mislead the public on behalf of their neoliberal benefactors by filling their rags with pieces on: Royalty, TV celebrities, football, female celebrities soft porn and to bury the reality of governmental hypocrisy with attacks on socialism being the bogey man. Fascism has seeped out and ignored by MSM editors. Thank God for independent media streams.

    1. A few years ago it was all still almost acceptable to a degree. It’s almost like it was decided on one ‘Very Specific Day’ in September 2015 that The International Elites/Establishment/Machine declared all out war on Socialism of any kind.
      No True Socialist to be aloud to run any of the many Fake Socialist Parties and all supporters, like us, will soon be facing Sentencing for whatever Act “Don’t you dare get cold feet!!!” can conjure up and throw at us!
      Have you ever looked at Thatcher’s Neolabour Party Tory MP’s Wiki Pages!?
      Everyone that I looked at said They were Left/Left Wing!!!!! They ALL said they were Socialist, Not “Democratic Socialists” but Social Democrats, I always wonder what that means, does it mean they are only Socially Democratic but not Formerly Democratic!?
      It is sickening to thing how Blair/Murdoch created that alliance to create The People of The Sun and Campbell/Mandelson used the same tactics to create The People of The Sun in Lambskin! They then dragged The Peoples of The Suns so deep into the Right Wing that they occupied, Politically, the same spot as Thatcher!
      Exactly where Thatcher’s Neoliberal Neolabour Tory Party lives! So all those People now comfortably turned into Tories by The Sun and The Guardian, believe that they are “Centrists”! No Such thing! Neoliberalism is Thatcherism is Toryism! The Neolabour Party are a Neoliberal Party that is Thatcherism NOT Hardieism!
      They Occupy/Infest The Democratic Socialist UK Labour Party, they can NEVER BE ‘IT’! No Matter What The Peoples of The Suns say!

      1. Bliar and Starmerfuhrer walk hand in hand in support of Bojo and his chums. Everyone of them has so many skeletons in their cupboards that support is a must…to survive scrutiny. All for one and one for all.

      2. So very True! People have to get their head around the fact that “Labour” the Corporate Brand is not split by the so called “Right” and the so called “Left”.
        “Labour” the Corporate Brand is split by 2 Polar Opposite Parties, 100% in Conflict with each other!

        The is The HOST Party and The Original Democratic Socialist, UK Labour Party, FOR The PEOPLE.
        The Parasite Party, Thatcher’s Neoliberal Neolabour Party Tories, Anti-Socialist, For Themselves & The Elites/Establishment/Machine!
        Neoliberalism = Thatcherism = Toryism!
        Neoliberalism ≠ Liberalism
        Neoliberalism ≠ “Centrism”
        They are Tories and nothing else and we have to vote them out, every ~180 of the bastards!
        As Painful as might be in many, many respects, with just 10/20/30 Democratic Socialist UK Labour Party MPs + The Unions DETORIED + A Massive Rejuvenated Membership, those 10/20/30 UK Labour Party, without the constant barrage of Coups, Sabotage, Undermining, Lies, Smears, Conniving, Scamming and 100% Neolabour Tory Free, will speak LOUDER and PROUDER FOR THE PEOPLE than all 620/630/640 Neoliberal Tory MPs in The HoC Combined! We have to be absolutely ruthless and vote for their strongest opponent whoever that may be!
        The Overnight option for CHANGE was blown in 2019, now we only have The ‘Long Game’ Left! By the following GE we will have Young Powerful Democratic Socialist Candidates like Zarah, Apsana, Bel, Claudia, Laura P, Laura S fuelled by Corbynism Fire in the Belly rearing to go for every seat in The HoC!
        Without the Internal interference “The Loony Left” will soon and rightfully be the ones who Speak Sense and FOR THE PEOPLE!
        People have The POWER!
        We can Change whatever we want, we just need to Unite, but not like the so called “United Left”/Divided Reft!
        Too Many Fake Left Platforms, If they speak of/mention The Loony Left/Aggressive/Angry/whatever else they call us then that Platform surely is 100% Starmerstruppen Tory! I wonder what they would have made of Hardie, Bevan, Benn, Skinner, etc on fire!?
        Loony Left is a thing of Luntzspeak to try and silence us and make us appear unhinged, only they did not expect us to admitting to be unhinged by what we saw and heard 2015 to 2020! If Course we were unhinged! Loony No, that goes to all those Told You So’s, Corbyn was Right’s, Refuted and now Proven Schemers, Scammers, Abusers of Antisemitism, etc, etc that is where your Loonies Are! All the People who tried so hard to make us out to be “The Loonies” ended up being The Actual REAL Loonies! I dare say some literally in lovely padded rooms in straightjackets, mumbling Magic Grandpa to themselves!

    2. I forgot to add soap operas, whose actors alter egos are discussed as if real and the actors private lives too…when there is so much slurry to be reported yet ignored.

    1. btw – geat anew rticle on PCR testing at yours, Wirral. Good to know that some socialists are seeing through the sham-merchants on covid. Respect!

  6. The MSM are experts on what they can get away with and have various default methods of insuring they can write whatever twisted version of reality suits their sick needs at the time.

    I really don’t understand why anyone under 70 reads them still, they have no purpose! It’s just evil fairy tails from twisted talentless writers.

    1. true. We don’t even need it to wrap fish and chips anymore. We’ve got yet more bloody plastic for that 😏

  7. “Starmer withdraws from Ramadan interfaith event after Board of Deputies warning.”

    “Labour leader pulls out of interfaith event featuring an individual who previously supported controversial Cage group following advice from deputy Tal Ofer.”

    The guy seems to be banjaxed, whichever way he turns.

  8. The Fascists have Full Control of Thatcher’s Neolabour Party Tories! The IRONY is that on the Page in The J News where ‘The Bored of Zionists’ make their Racist Demand on Starmer, there is a link to a Podcast within the same article, called “Racism and the Jewish Community!”
    Shocking ABSOLUTELY Shocking!

  9. Alan Duncan – wasn’t he the one who Shai Masot said he would “take down”? […along with lots of members of the LP].
    Regarding the MSM “code” – does that mean that we can have free shots at Hodge?

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