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(Credit: Farnham Herald, screenshot)

The UK Press Complaints Commission ruled that it was OK for the Farnham Herald to use information and a photo from an assault victim’s Facebook page in a story that identified the victim.

The newspaper defended its reporting because the information was posted publicly on Facebook without privacy settings and because it tried to contact the person for more information. However, because of the victim’s “concerns,” the Herald did unpublish the story from its website, the PCC ruling reported.

The PCC noted it didn’t find the Herald‘s reporting to be inaccurate or invasive since the victim “unwittingly” provided the information and since the story “was a straightforward account of a newsworthy incident, substantially corroborated by local police, which included no gratuitous information about the complainant’s private life.”

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iMediaEthics wrote in 2010 when the Danish Press Council banned journalists from reporting on Facebook accounts with privacy settings for “friends only.” With that “friends only” setting, information posted on those accounts can only be seen by the account holder’s approved “friends.”

UPDATE: 12/2/2012 10:54 AM EST: Added info

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PCC: Farnham Herald Didn’t Violate Privacy or Accuracy with Info, Photo from Facebook

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