The Guardian’s Roy Greenslade highlighted a good example of a newspaper correction. Weekly Scottish newspaper, The Helensburgh Advertiser, incorrectly reported that a man “indecently assaulted a woman in a pub and also assaulted a man two days later,” when in fact the man “pleaded not guilty to a charge of indecent assault” and “admitted the other charge,” according to Greenslade.
The error reportedly was made because the newspaper got its information about the charges from “a charge sheet form the sheriff clerk’s office” and from the court hearing, neither of which indicated the pleas. However, that wasn’t the most up-to-date way to get information, so the newspaper has since updated its court reporting policy.
The newspaper issued a correction and apology in its next issue, a week later, Greenslade reported.
However, the man filed a complaint over the story’s error and the apology with the Press Complaints Commission. While the PCC ruled that the Advertiser did make the error, the PCC approved the correction and apology, which was “prominently” featured on page 3. According to Greenslade, the incorrect report ran on page 9 and was only 130 words long.