Enforcing ethical standards to safeguard the credibility and legitimacy of public media corporations: The role of News Ombudspersons in Spain and France

Adriana Mutu

Article ID: 2916
Vol 8, Issue 4, 2024

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This study introduces a cross-country comparative analysis of the role of News Ombudsperson in the public media corporations in Spain and France. It investigates the specific media self-regulatory processes established to reduce reputational risks and increase the trust and credibility of the media organisations. It aims to fill in the gaps in prior research by applying a qualitative framework developed using indicators derived from scholarly work on regulation and governance and media management. The variables selected for the analysis are extracted from prior interdisciplinary research and focus on media self-regulatory processes, complaints management mechanisms, election, reporting procedures, checks and balances, roles, visibility and transparency of News Ombudspersons in two countries which represent the Polarised Pluralist media system category. Research questions are raised in relation to the main variables identified for the comparative analysis. Data were collected from multiple publicly available international sources, including public media organizations databases, national media regulatory authorities, and academic studies. Results reveal cross-country variations. The systematic investigation of different forms of self-regulatory procedures might lead to concrete recommendations and best practice models for media organizations beyond the European Union. Further research could address the role of media audiences as relevant stakeholders in media governance processes.


Europe; media governance; public service media; self-regulation; reputational risks; media systems

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.24294/jipd.v8i4.2916


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