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Ombudsman Blog: Is it right to ‘unpublish’ online content?

August 12th, 2010Posted by in Editors' pick, Press freedom and ethics

Washington Post ombudsman Andrew Alexander gives a fascinating overview of the problems faced by news organisations when readers ask them to “unpublish” content online – particularly archived stories or for legal reasons. It’s from earlier this week, but well worth a read. What’s the best practice for this procedure and is the industry thinking about the issue enough?

I’m not entirely comfortable with policies that cause public information to automatically disappear from a website, even if it involves a misdemeanor. This kind of information, typically found through a Google search, may lack context. But once information is in the public domain, it should live on. It’s part of the historical record and should be accessible.

Full post on the Washington Post’s website at this link…

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