IPSO issues new information for the public on court reporting; reporting of deaths and inquests and how journalists use information from social media

The Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO) has today issued new information sheets for the public, the first three of a new series.



Supporting the public and upholding high standards of journalism is integral to IPSO’s work. This new series is designed to help people understand the rules which newspapers and magazines regulated by IPSO must follow so they may be more confident in engaging with the press. The information also explains how IPSO can help when needed. 

The first three topics were chosen because they address issues about which IPSO receives the most contact from the public.

Court reporting: What to expect is for people who may be involved in court proceedings, including witnesses, people accused of a crime or the family of someone accused of a crime. It explains the importance of open justice and gives information about what to expect when the press is interested in reporting court cases, and how IPSO can help with any concerns.

Press reporting on a death is for people who have suffered a recent loss of someone close to them. It explains what to expect when newspapers and magazines report a death or an inquest, as well as about how IPSO can help.

Journalism and the use of information from social media is for anyone concerned about how a newspaper or magazine can use information taken from social media, and gives advice about the rules which newspapers and magazines must follow as well as the support IPSO can offer.

The new information was developed with IPSO’s Reader’s Advisory Panel, which advises the organisation on its work and wider issues from the perspective of readers and citizens. IPSO has also published guidance for journalists on reporting deaths sensitively and on the use of information taken from social media.

Charlotte Urwin, Head of Standards, said:

“Often, the first time members of the public encounter the press is in relation to a stressful or traumatic event such as the death of a family member or after being caught up in a major incident.

“While some people may wish to speak to journalists, to tell their story, highlight an injustice or gather public support for a campaign, it can be hard to know what to expect.

These three information sheets are the first of a new series for the public and answer some of the questions we are often asked about these topics and explain how IPSO can help.”