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Victory Against Vi Newspaper!

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This article was originally posted on in March

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1367075/Number-houses-sale-25-owners-realistic-values-homes.html

The title was originally "Property sales soar 25%".

However the article later went into detail - "The number of houses put up for sale has soared by 25 per cent".

Anyway, I put in a complaint to the press complaints commission saying this title was incorrect and misleading.. # of sales is very different to # for sale.

Just 4 months of bureaucracy and red tape later... and the title has been forced to change to "Number of houses for sale up by 25%".

Yeah it took ages and was probably worthless, but this just goes to show you can actually make a difference! But geez, 4 months!?

Below is the email from the press complaints commission:

===

I write further to my correspondence of 21 April.

The Commission has now considered the complaint for a second time under the Editors’ Code of Practice, and has come to a view that, while the newspaper had breached the Code, the remedial action it offered was sufficient to remedy the breach. A full explanation of the Commission’s decision is included below.

Thank you for your patience and I am sorry that the investigation has taken some time.

Yours sincerely,

Elizabeth Cobbe

Commission’s decision in the case of

Chandler v Daily Mail

The complainant was concerned that the headline was inaccurate. As subsequently made clear in the article, the number of properties on estate agents’ books had increased by 25%, which did not equate to a 25% increase in actual sales.

It is generally the practice of the Commission to consider headlines in the context of the article. This is because they are brief and limited in content and therefore give only a restricted summary of what is inevitably a more complex set of circumstances expounded in the body of the article. Nonetheless, Clause 1 (Accuracy) of the Code of Practice requires headlines to include correct information. While the Commission acknowledged the newspaper’s position that the phrase “property sales” could include properties in the process of being sold, it considered that readers would widely interpret this as properties that had been sold. It noted that the situation was made clear in the opening sentence of the article, stating that the “number of houses put up for sale has soared by 24 per cent”; however the caption beneath the photograph incorrectly stated that “the number of properties on the market that have been sold has increased by 25 per cent since last year”. It was the Commission’s view that this could compound the implication that the figure reflected the number of houses which had been sold rather than were for sale. Although the body of the article did make clear the situation, the Commission considered that the headline and the caption in conjunction had the potential to mislead readers, and that the matter would benefit from clarification in accordance with Clause 1 (Accuracy) of the Code.

The newspaper had altered the headline of the online article (it had not appeared in the print edition) and the caption beneath the photograph to make clear that the 25% related to houses for sale. Furthermore, it had offered to publish a clarification on this point as an addendum to the article. The Commission was of the view that the newspaper’s actions and its offer to publish the statement represented sufficient remedial action.

One of the non-lead complainants had raised a concern over the use of the term “soar”. The Commission made clear that the language used by a newspaper was a matter for the discretion of individual editors, provided that such choices would not mislead readers. Given that the term was used in the context of a 25% increase, the Commission did not consider that the newspaper’s choice of words in this instance raised a breach of Clause 1 (Accuracy) of the Code.

One of the other non-lead complainants had expressed concern in relation to Clause 13 (Financial Journalism). There was no suggestion that the reporter had used financial information in advance of its general publication for their own profit – the article had been based on information supplied by the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) and related to the property market in general – and the article did not relate to specific shares or securities. The Commission was of the view that the article did not engage the terms of Clause 13 of the Editors’ Code.

Reference No. 111451

<name removed>

Complaints Officer

Press Complaints Commission

Halton House

20/23 Holborn

London EC1N 2JD

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Well done, as you say though 4 months to change something as blatantly wrong as that is ridiculous.

I've recently won 2 Information Commissionaire cases against a council who, deliberately in my opinion, withheld information from me and lied about not having it. They claimed not to have any way of retrieving e-mail until I pointed out they had an e-mail archiving system that a friend of mine had sold them! However nobody got punished and it wasted tens of thousands of £ in time and legal fees so I'm not sure it was worth it other than my own satisfaction in being proven correct!

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On your escellent suggestion I did the same and got the same email today. I've sent Cobbe back an email about what needs to happen and ended it 'but it won't.'

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A couple of weeks ago I noticed the Beeb website's coverage of the latest Land Reg data was minimal. No mention in the breaking news bar, on the business or economy pages etc, even though the report showed comprehensive YoY falls of greater than 10% in places like Manchester. The next day, the much less comprehensive Nationwide report was out which gave an unchanged monthly figure. This made the BBC's breaking news bar, a story on the front page and a prominent positioning on the business pages. I made a formal complaint to them on that basis (probably coincidentally, but subsequent articles on the website re house prices have been more balanced and a radio interview this week even included the statement that house prices falls wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing! It's extremely unlikely one complaint made a difference, but I like to think so!).

This thread has reminded me that I ticked the box asking for a reply from the Beeb, which was due in two weeks - that's today, no reply has come, so I'm going to follow it up.

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Its a hard life, working in the press.

You publish a press release as news.

or if its a journalist who IS the news, thats easy too.

Finding real stories though,......now THAT would be rare.

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Gosh, you must have felt really strongly about this (or had too much spare time on your hands) lol

Yeah, that's kind of the point of this website.....

Good to see someone taking direct action against VI press coverage, well done OP.

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This article was originally posted on in March

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1367075/Number-houses-sale-25-owners-realistic-values-homes.html

The title was originally "Property sales soar 25%".

However the article later went into detail - "The number of houses put up for sale has soared by 25 per cent".

Anyway, I put in a complaint to the press complaints commission saying this title was incorrect and misleading.. # of sales is very different to # for sale.

Just 4 months of bureaucracy and red tape later... and the title has been forced to change to "Number of houses for sale up by 25%".

Yeah it took ages and was probably worthless, but this just goes to show you can actually make a difference! But geez, 4 months!?

Below is the email from the press complaints commission:

(...)

Excellent! Well done!

And thank you!

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Excellent well done guys, maybe they will think more carefully about their headlines in future! Or maybe not..,

They will, if we do more of this.

If every time they print a misleading headline they have to waste time and money defending themselves against an investigation by the Press Complaints Commission, then I suspect they will start to be a bit more careful. :)

Well done OP!

OP: Do you have a link for this complaint form, or page?

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A couple of weeks ago I noticed the Beeb website's coverage of the latest Land Reg data was minimal. No mention in the breaking news bar, on the business or economy pages etc, even though the report showed comprehensive YoY falls of greater than 10% in places like Manchester. The next day, the much less comprehensive Nationwide report was out which gave an unchanged monthly figure. This made the BBC's breaking news bar, a story on the front page and a prominent positioning on the business pages. I made a formal complaint to them on that basis (probably coincidentally, but subsequent articles on the website re house prices have been more balanced and a radio interview this week even included the statement that house prices falls wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing! It's extremely unlikely one complaint made a difference, but I like to think so!).

This thread has reminded me that I ticked the box asking for a reply from the Beeb, which was due in two weeks - that's today, no reply has come, so I'm going to follow it up.

Go for it rantnrave. Well done. And thank you!

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Congratulations to the OP.

Shame on the Daily Mail for taking 4 months to change a blatantly wrong headline. Guess they were too busy listening in to the voicemail of some kid who died in a car crash*.

* to anyone who tries to tell me that I'm getting confused with the NOTW: do you really think the NOTW is the only paper that gets up to these tricks?

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Comment posted on the BBC Editor's Web Page re a discussion of how the Beeb is covering economic news. One of us?

There is a terrible and damaging omission in the way that the BBC and HM Treasury (and the Bank of England) look at the economy.

Whilst I don't blame the BBC, as the fault is with economics itself and you hire economists and have the same problem in understanding what is wrong with the questions you ask economists and politicians.

Consider this:

We have suffered considerable asset price inflation (house prices) now what this means is that whilst real wages have been essentially static for the last thirty years we have in fact become much poorer.

Essentially the regulators and the Treasury allowed house price inflation to rocket the effect of which is to bring forward expenditure from future earned income to today (or as today was the last decade - then too). We have quite literally spent our children's income.

The reasonable question is ask is why this should have been so and then what are the consequences.

So why do, and did, the economists not see this gigantic rocking in debt as a bad thing? Why did they not equate it with inflation, which they do see as a bad thing? Here we start to get the nub of why the management of the economy has been so flawed and has been so predictably flawed over the last twenty years. This was also the root cause of the economic collapse and until the private debt problem is handled we will remain mired in depression (also see 1870 The Long Depression and the role od debt deflation in getting us out of the 1930s collapse.)

I fully understand why the BBC do not want to talk about this elephant in the room - but without doing so we are just moving the deckchairs of the Titanic of the economy even after we hit the iceberg.

The consequence of understanding the nature of the collapse and the flawed nature of economics is necessary and very uncomfortable fro economists and politicians - but without recognising the essential truth behind the arithmetic we are in extreme danger of deluding ourselves into another and far deeper and more damaging recession and collapse. Economists don't understand assets they only understand income. They are happy to flog off the forests/gold reserves this year to boos GDP and simply ignore the loss of the assets themselves.

I have given a full analysis over the last two or three years on the BBC's economics blogs and have supported everything I have said with facts and data. So why do the BBC ignore the arithmetic reality?

What we really need is a BBC TV (BBC4) series talking about the realities of the way ahead and the lessons of history - why haven't we had it?

My suspicion as to why it has not happened is that there is a huge vested economic interest in the City and Government to hide the reality from the poeple, but the sums are incontrovertible. Despite educating our children into mass innumeracy and an establishment that prides itself in not being able to do sums the sums and their results are inevitable and unavoidable.

Should we tell the people? Quite a reasonable question from some perspectives, but the people will find out for themselves as their income declines still further and more and more jobs flee to the developing World to say nothing of the repossessions that will result from even a tiny increase of interest rates. Should the doctor tell you that you are about to expire? I think it is your duty to do so - you may have another opinion.

Why does the BBC not see it as its role to explain to the audience that interest rates have consequences and a history? Why will you not explain that interest rates are at one fifth of the previous lowest level and this has not only impoverished the elderly whose savings incomes have been decimated (not the real Roman version of i/10 but the popular 90% reduction). Why do you never talk about annuity rates and how they are linked to interest rates and how this has dramatically cut retirement pensions? Your audience knows about this - but you seem to hope that by conspiring to keep quiet about it it will go away - it will not!

You say that "there are differing points of view and analysis which may occasionally make uncomfortable reading from both sides of the political divide", but I caution you that both sides of the political divide are against the interests of the audience and I wonder how that fits in with your position? Is it your duty to say it as it is even though neither side of the political divide nor their economists want to talk about it? I think it is your duty.

This is over 4500 characters, but it needs to be said! And it actually matters that it is said!

Please explain why you are conspiring against the interests of the British people?

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Comment posted on the BBC Editor's Web Page re a discussion of how the Beeb is covering economic news. One of us?

There is a terrible and damaging omission in the way that the BBC and HM Treasury (and the Bank of England) look at the economy.

Whilst I don't blame the BBC, as the fault is with economics itself and you hire economists and have the same problem in understanding what is wrong with the questions you ask economists and politicians.

The problem is they only hire Pseudo Kenynesians who dominate the economics profession, however this is the same with most news channels they won't hire the Austrians.

The very fact that none of these supposed Kenyensian economists will even state Keynes advocated a balance budget and the saving of surpluses in boom years speaks volumes.

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Did you get any compensation from the Mail?

Surely you must have got whiplash when you saw the headline and this has caused marital breakdown, time off work, ADHD, overeating etc etc... must be worth 40 or 50 million at least.

Anyway, well done.

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This article was originally posted on in March

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1367075/Number-houses-sale-25-owners-realistic-values-homes.html

Yeah it took ages and was probably worthless, but this just goes to show you can actually make a difference! But geez, 4 months!?

Well Done.!!

Its the seemingly small inaccuracies that actually build to make up a mountain of falsehoods and no wonder people get confused by slanted headlines in newspapers.

A small victory, but victory nonetheless.

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  • 309 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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