Monday, 17 October 2011

The Mail's first corrections column

The Daily Mail has followed in the footsteps of its Sunday sister paper and published its first 'Clarifications and corrections' column on page two of today's paper.

It begins:

The average issue of the Daily Mail contains around 80,000 words - the equivalent of a paperback book - most of which are written on the day under tremendous pressure of deadlines.

Huge efforts are made to ensure our journalism meets the highest possible standards of accuracy but it is inevitable that mistakes do occur.

This new column provides an opportunity to correct those errors quickly and prominently. 

The first clarification is aimed at Michael Levy:

On 26 September we reported that barrister Michael Levy had been arrested on suspicion of “carousel” fraud.  Whilst HM Revenue & Customs confirmed the information to us at the time, we now understand that Mr Levy was arrested on suspicion of irregularities in his personal tax position, which he denies.

This appears on the Mail's website. But the other three clarifications do not. The next is:

An article on 9 September reported a World Economic Forum survey which ranked UK schools 43rd in the world for maths. We are happy to clarify that the survey was based on the opinions of business leaders about teaching in their own countries.

There's no sign of this on the original article or anywhere else.


An article on 27 September, 'Tesco wins opening skirmish as price war catches out rivals', quoted the price of a Sainsbury's shopping basket at £26.26 against the Tesco equivalent of £19.04. While the Sainsbury's basket remained more expensive than the other supermarkets surveyed, the correct figure should have been £23.51.

There's no sign of this online either, but the original article has disappeared from the Mail's website.

Finally, and perhaps inevitably, they correct something Richard Littlejohn wrote:

A reference in Richard Littlejohn's column reported the allegation that Dacorum Borough Council in Hertfordshire had ignored six letters and as many phone calls from a resident requesting additional assistance in caring for her incapacitated mother before finally making a hone visit and refusing her request. In fact the complaint concerned Hertfordshire County Council. 

There's no sign of this online, but the original column as been corrected, although with no note admitting this.

So the Mail on Sunday's clarifications were all published on MailOnline, although the original articles were not corrected and didn't have the clarifications added. Today, the Mail has published only one of the four clarifications online.

Hopefully, in future, all clarifications will appear on the website and there will be some note on the original article (if it still exists) about those corrections.

(Hat-tip to The Grim Reaper blog)

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for this. I have a lot of time on my hands at the moment and spent a lot of time yesterday looking for the corrections column on the website.

    Do they only want to admit their mistakes to little Britain?


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