STANDARDS OF PRACTICE
Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd abides by the Australian Press Council’s Standards of Practice.
The Press Council endeavours to ensure that its standards promote excellence in journalistic practice and reflect the realities of journalism and the media industry in Australia. Council members – representing the general public, the publishers and independent journalists – regularly review the Standards of Practice to ensure their continuing relevance and effectiveness.
Under the Council’s Constitution, the Standards of Practice are binding on all member publications, and are applied in the resolution of all complaints (whether or not the publisher is a Council member). The Council’s Standards of Practice relating to print and online publishing are contained in the Statement of General Principles (below).
In addition, Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd abides by what the Press Council has developed and published including a variety of Advisory Guidelines for editors and journalists, to help guide them in producing high-quality news coverage.
The Council continues to review and revise the existing Guidelines and to develop new ones where appropriate. In many cases, the Council hopes to reinforce these Guidelines with education and training initiatives for the industry, in which Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd will take part.
The Council regularly organises round table discussions and other meetings with journalists, editors, members of the community and representatives of peak bodies in order to determine concerns, controversies and uncertainties about ethical reporting on issues of importance, which helps guide the Council’s work program and priorities in this area. Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd keeps updated with the outcome of these meetings and abides by any changes.
STATEMENT OF GENERAL PRINCIPLES
This Statement of General Principles forms part of the Australian Press Council’s Standards of Practice, by which Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd abides. The Standards are applied when considering and adjudicating on complaints about particular instances of practice.
The Council’s Advisory Guidelines may also be taken into account but are not binding Standards.
The Standards of Practice apply to text, headlines, photographs, graphics, captions, audio, video and all other forms of published material, but not to advertising.
Publishers and editors are responsible for taking reasonable steps to comply with the Standards in their print and online publications. This applies to actions by their employees and external contributors, including those who are not journalists.
Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd abides by the Council’s Constitution to co-operate with its handling of complaints. This includes publishing all Council adjudications relating to Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd particular publications.
In a democratic society, all people have the right to freedom of expression and to be informed. These rights cannot be secured unless the press is free to publish facts and opinions without fear or favour.
Freedom of the press, however, carries responsibilities to the public. Liberty does not mean licence, and due regard must be given to other important freedoms, rights and values which are in the public interest.
Accordingly, the Press Council has laid down the following General Principles to which all Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd mastheads are committed to abide by.
Publications are free to publish as they wish by reporting facts and expressing opinions, provided they take reasonable steps to comply with the following Principles and the Council’s other Standards of Practice.
Accuracy and clarity
- Ensure that factual material in news reports and elsewhere is accurate and not misleading, and is distinguishable from other material such as opinion.
- Provide a correction or other adequate remedial action if published material is significantly inaccurate or misleading.
Fairness and balance
- Ensure that factual material is presented with reasonable fairness and balance, and that writers’ expressions of opinion are not based on significantly inaccurate factual material or omission of key facts.
- Ensure that where material refers adversely to a person, a fair opportunity is given for subsequent publication of a reply if that is reasonably necessary to address a possible breach of General Principle 3.
Privacy and avoidance of harm
- Avoid intruding on a person’s reasonable expectations of privacy, unless doing so is sufficiently in the public interest.
- Avoid causing or contributing materially to substantial offence, distress or prejudice, or a substantial risk to health or safety, unless doing so is sufficiently in the public interest.
Integrity and transparency
- Avoid publishing material which has been gathered by deceptive or unfair means, unless doing so is sufficiently in the public interest.
- Ensure that conflicts of interests are avoided or adequately disclosed, and that they do not influence published material.
The Publisher or her authorised nominee/s reserves the right to refuse an advertisement for whatever reason; however, the advertiser will be informed of the reason for refusal at the earliest possible time after Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd receipt of the proposed advertisement.
All claims made in advertisements are those of the advertiser and are in no way endorsed by Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd. Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd reserves the right to reject the publication of any claims that the Publisher determines are likely to contravene Australian advertising standards or that would cause hurt or embarrassment to, or call into question the integrity or professionalism of, any third party.
Advertisers and contributors and their agents warrant to the Publisher that supplied material is in no way an infringement of any copyright or other right. The advertiser, contributor or its agents agree to indemnify the Publisher against any claims or judgments in consequence of any breach.
‘Advertorial’ is the term for newspaper and magazine content that looks like editorial content but is published under a commercial arrangement between an advertiser, promoter or sponsor of goods and/or services and the publisher.
Such commercial arrangements may include payment for articles to be published and undertakings that editorial content will be published in exchange for, or as part of, an agreement to place an advertisement or provide a sponsorship.
‘Advertorials’ in Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd are identified by such terms as “advertisement”, “advertising feature”, “special feature”, or “sponsored editorial” or are carried in a defined Special Feature section within the magazine, so that readers are not led to believe the content is based on editorial news values free of commercial influences.
‘Advertorials’ are regarded as advertisements and will be covered by regulations and guidelines that apply to advertisements. Complaints to Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd or the Australian Press Council about ‘advertorials’ usually will be redirected to a relevant advertising or trade practices authority. Complaints can also be lodged at Ad Standards Limited, complaints form : https://adstandards.com.au/lodge-complaint
Where publication of material is not part of a commercial arrangement or not deemed to be ‘advertorial’, or is said to mislead readers as to its provenance, and is the subject of a complaint lodged with the Council, it will be dealt with under the Council’s Standards of Practice.
On receiving a complaint, a member of Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd staff will obtain any further details that he or she considers necessary at this stage. The Publisher will then decide whether the complaint should not be considered further because:
It does not meet the requirements about what can be complained about, or who can make a complaint, or when and how a complaint should be made (see form below); or,
It is more appropriate for consideration by some other process (such as referral to a third party, amendment of processes; or referring the complaint for consideration by the Australian Press Council or a similar industry body); or,
Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd has already received a complaint and considers the matter sufficiently remedied; or,
Even if the facts alleged in the complaint are correct, it is unlikely that a breach of the Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd Editorial Guidelines or the Australian Press Council’s Standards of Practice has occurred; or,
Consideration of the complaint might require Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd to commit greater resources than is reasonably proportionate to the significance of the likely breaches; or,
For some other reason, the complaint is inappropriate for further consideration.
Where the complainant is not personally identified or directly affected by the published material, the complaint may be considered as a “secondary complaint”.
In this situation, the Publisher also takes into account the following considerations, in addition to those mentioned in the previous paragraph, when deciding whether the matter should be considered further:
The risk of aggravating any possible invasion of privacy or other harm caused to people or organisations which are directly affected by the material; or,
The extent to which informing the complainant, the media industry and the general public whether a particular type of breach has occurred may provide an important example of the application of the Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd Standards, even if people or organisations directly affected by it do not wish to make or endorse a complaint themselves or they cannot be contacted; or,
The extent to which consideration of the complaint might require the commitment of greater resources by Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd or the complainant than is reasonably proportionate to the significance of the possible breaches; or,
The extent to which the matter requires the primary person’s input and/or participation.
Where there are several separate complaints about the same material, the Publisher may decide to involve only one or some of the complainants in further consideration of the material. Where practicable, complainants will be notified individually of that decision and of the final outcome. Otherwise, the outcome of matters involving a significant number of complainants will be published on the Australian Press Council’s website.
HANDLING OF COMPLAINT
Unless the Publisher decides to discontinue consideration of the complaint, Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd will promptly respond to the complaint by telephone call or email.
The phone call and/or email will focus on whether Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd has already taken action in relation to a direct complaint about the material in question or may be willing to consider doing so in relation to the complaint.
If the Publisher decides to discontinue consideration of a complaint, the complainant will be informed accordingly and may seek review of that decision, provided the request is received within seven days of being notified.
If a review is not sought, or is unsuccessful, the complaint will be considered resolved.
REVIEW / ESCALATION
Should the complaint fail to be discontinued or resolved as a result of these initial processes, or in cases where the complainant disagrees with the resolution of the matter, Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd recommends that the complainant submit the complaint for consideration by the Australian Press Council, e.g. via its online complaints form.
Regardless of its membership status, the initial source of the complaint, or any prior resolution or discontinuance attempted by Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd, Australian Retirement Press Pty Ltd will co-operate with any requests made by the Council and publish any adjudication by it.
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