Following my latest complaint to the Guardian Readers’ Editor yesterday (regarding the way complaints about this had been handled), I have been told that because I had complained to the PCC, all correspondence must be via the PCC (due to PCC protocol):
… there is a definite protocol with PCC matters. Under it, all correspondence is via the PCC. When the PCC pursues a complaint, it sends the contents of that complaint to whoever are the designated people at a newspaper handling PCC matters. In the Guardian’s case, whichever of its managing editors is available in any given week to handle PCC issues then responds via the PCC.
The PCC can give you details of the process from their end.
Perhaps it was naive of me to go to the PCC in the first instance (which I did in a bid to be taken seriously and because I feel strongly about the original article). If I had just complained to the Readers’ Editor in the first place maybe I would have been kept better informed.
I had copied my PCC contact in on yesterday’s email only to receive an Out of Office autoreply stating that she’s away until 27th June. I’m not sure if in assigning my complaint to someone who isn’t actually there, the PCC are not taking me seriously or if they are expecting the Guardian to resolve the complaint in the meantime.
(I have responded by replying to the person at the PCC who had given me that contact, attaching a copy of yesterday’s email.)
Either way, the offending article is still online, there has still been no correction or clarification and I have received next to no information from the Guardian on how this is being handled.
I will continue to push this until I get a satisfactory conclusion. I hope that in making such a fuss, complainants such as myself will deter the Guardian from printing such nonsense in future and will encourage them to treat complaints with the respect they deserve.