Thursday, July 2, 2009

Wakefield and the Times

As reported at the Age of Autism site, there has been some small action in the matter of Brian Deer's reporting in Times. It was five months ago that Brian Deer's articles appeared in the Times online and four months ago that Dr Wakefield filed a complaint with the UK's Press Complaints Commission (PCC).

The commission has not yet ruled on the complaint but it just recently asked the Times to remove the articles in question from their web site, which they did.

As I said before, I did not expect the PCC to take any real action on the case and while the asking the Times to take down the articles for now is a good first step, it is a far cry from actually issuing a ruling in the case. The PCC's charter promises to "respond swiftly to your enquiries" and "deal with your complaint as quickly as possible ... in an average of 35 working days". So are only taking three times longer than they say they would.

OK, in all fairness, it seems like the majority of the time has been spent waiting for the Times to respond to the complaint - according to the Age of Autism, it took the Times over three months to respond

I cannot understand why this is moving so slowing. I would assume that Brian Deer would have all the facts needed to support his stories and that the fact checking department of the newspaper would have verified the story before it was printed. If this had happened then then the newspaper should have been able to submit them to the PCC and the complaint should be swiftly resolved.

But judging from the delay and the fact that the PCC has asked the Times to take down the stories I am guessing that he does not have the facts to back up his stories. Maybe it is time for the Times to retract the story and Mr Deer to apologize?

1 comment:

  1. hi
    take at my piece on Age of Autism

    on the making of the film "Selective Hearing, Brain Deer and the GMC"

    please watch the film its 1 hour long and will answer many of your questions about Brian Deer