Today we visited IPSO, the Independent Press Standards Organization, which I was quite excited about. IPSO created a framework for members of the press to abide by to maintain a healthy balance between freedom of information and privacy maintenance. The press enters a contract with IPSO to abide by their code, and it’s IPSO’s job to take consumer complaints about these organizations and intervene when they breach these standards. Entering IPSO is not mandatory, but organizations are incentivized to do so.
My favorite thing about IPSO is that they have a section that specifically outlines how journalists should report sexual crimes involving children. I’m a survivor of childhood sexual assault, and speaking from experience, I think a reason why some people don’t report is because they don’t want that information getting out. I think if the USA had their own version of IPSO, reporting rates might be higher.
Later, we went to lunch to meet with journalist, activist and founder of the Women’s Equality Party, Catherine Mayer. Speaking with someone who is passionate about feminism and cares enough to act on it was incredible. One thing that stuck with me from our discussion is when she said, “Equality shouldn’t be political; it’s just politicized.” I’m super excited about the future of the WEP and all of the amazing things they’re going to accomplish.
We ended our day with a visit from Ofcom, which is essentially the IPSO of television, radio, telecommunications and postal services. The people who spoke to us were quite interested in how American television operates, which was funny because a lot of us watch Netflix and use the internet for news, so television isn’t that prominent anymore.
I had a nice day, and I can’t wait to explore more of British media.