Covering Sex Offences


The victim is automatically given lifelong anonymity by the court under the Sexual Offence Amendment Act 1992 to save embarrassment and trauma

Under Section one of the Sexual Offences Amendment Act 1992 after an allegation has been made it is illegal to include, in any publication, any matter which is likely to lead members of the public to identify, during his or her, lifetime, the person who is the victim/alleged victim of that offence.

The ban includes:

  • The name
  • The address
  • The identity of any school or other educational establishment attended by them
  • Any still or moving picture of him or her

The order starts from the moment an allegation is made by the alleged victim or anyone else, even if no one is charged and it is automatic.

It remains even if the allegation is later withdrawn, where the police are told, whether the offender is prosecuted and whether anyone is convicted.

Anonymity applies to the target of an attempt to conspiracy to commit a sex act.

You have to be cause about Jigsaw identification – public putting information together and figuring out who it is referring to.

If the victim is not related to the defendant then you can print about the defendant without having to be too careful, however, in the case we saw the victim shared their surname with the defendant so you would have to be careful about what to print e.g. you could not put that it was their stepdaughter as this might lead to identification of the victim.

Jigsaw Identification

Section on bans publication of any matter that is like to lead to identification

For example, if the victim attends a large school, you could name the school as people won’t be able to identify the person, you would have to be careful about giving further information e.g. 14 year old who plays the violin – this could lead to identification as there might not be many 14 year old violinists at the school

You need to check the information that other publications are printing, if all publications give different bits of information about the victim – all publications would be in breach of the Act if this happened.

If the case is within a family then the publications should agree beforehand about printing the name and omit the relationship or not identify the adult defender and describe the abuse.

Media organisations can be fined for inadvertently publishing material which breaches the act.

In some circumstances the other can be lifted or varied to enable the media to report a case:

Only four ways you can identify a victim of a sex attack:

  1. If they die
  2. If they have signed a waiver to lift their anonymity
  3. If they have lied and made a false allegation
  4. If they are convicted of a crime and use the fact they were a victim of a sex offence as mitigation

Challenging Court Orders

You can challenge all order imposed by the court except in sex cases because victims of sexual offences have automatic anonymity.

As a journalist it is important for me to know the laws, this will help me from been sued, fined and will help to keep my reputation in tacked. I want to be a trustworthy, truthful and follow the guidelines. If I was to go into court journalism these are key as, you can ask for the anonymity to be lifted, if it is the public’s interest.

Media Ownership: Comparison of 2 tabloids ‘The Times and The Sun’

In this task I have chosen to compare two different newspapers one which is a broadsheet and the other a tabloid. I choose to look at the ‘The Times and The Sun’. Both have similarities and differences. This is because they have to reach and grab the attention of the different demographic target audiences, each newspaper looks at the psychographics of the audience to find out what the needs are, what is of interest and more about the type of person. From this it allows the produces of each newspaper to mold the content, the style of writing and designs to best suit the requirements. This will also help to make the audiences happy, also will help to increase sales and brand loyalty. The main difference of each newspaper is the format, a broadsheet is larger in size meaning more information is given out. Also, “Broadsheets newspapers are known to have a more expert outlook to how they present their stories as in the language they use and layout of the content on the page”[1].

The first similarity I noticed when researching was that both are published on a daily basis, this keeps up with demand and current and new stories. It allows the producers to provided the most up to date news. Another, similarity of both newspapers is that the owner is Rupert Murdoch. Rupert Murdoch is a media tycoon and controls a lot of the media. ‘Murdoch inherited his father’s papers, the Sunday Mail and the News, and continued to purchase other media outlets over the years’[2].

The Sun tabloid newspaper has a main demographic and psychographic target audience. It appears to be those who are young and of working class standings. In the Socioeconomic status, this newspaper would be aimed more toward those of (C2, D and E)

C2 skilled working class Skilled manual workers [3]
D working class Semi-skilled and unskilled manual workers[3]
E non working Casual or lowest grade workers, pensioners, and others who depend on the welfare state for their income [3]

Tabloids are good for this audience as these provide expected topics for instance, celebrity gossip, stories and reality stuff etc. These are topics the audiences will expect to see in ‘The Sun’. The effectiveness of this is that it is uncovering things that the younger generation will be interested in a simple way. Like the language use, how much and the ways pictures are used frequently. The layout of the sun is a lot bolder, more colour, shorter articles, more pictures and focuses on human interest stories.

[2GM - 1]  SUN/PAGES/NEWS... 08/07/13

The Times broadsheet newspaper has a much more appeal to those more educated and of a better social class of (A, B, C1).

A upper middle class Higher managerial, administrative or professional [3]
B middle class Intermediate managerial, administrative or professional [3]
C1 lower middle class Supervisory or clerical and junior managerial, administrative or professional[3]

Also have a primary target audience of those around the 16 – 50 age group. These are the ones who are mainly in employment. In my opinion I feel like the times is much more aimed towards males then the female audience. The reasons for this is that broadsheets are more focused around international news and politics, having a much plainer and simple layout. Less colours, smaller text hardly any images or if used much smaller then what we would see with the more tabloid layout.


[1] Target audience facts | In the news. 2015. Target audience facts | In the news. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 10 December 2015].

[2] The website. 2015. Rupert Murdoch Biography. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 12 December 15].

[3] NRS social grade – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 2015. NRS social grade – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 12 December 2015].

(4) . 2015. . [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 28 December 2015].

(5)  Murray’s Wimbledon win – the front pages . 2015. Murray’s Wimbledon win – the front pages . [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 28 December 2015].


Reflection- News in Brief

In a recent session the group was introduced to News in Brief also known as (NIB). These are mini stories/ articles that follow the sane structure as a larger story in the sense that it is the most important information given. A nib is only a short piece many a couple of hundred words or less. for the ‘Your News’ segment of the Hull Daily Mail, I have and will be writing multiple NIB’s for this segment using the methods of the introductions to news stories. News in brief is similar to an introduction for a leading story. Having a word count limit means it is harder to decipher the most important and key information.

When writing a nib, I will still try and use as many of the 5W’s as possible. (who, what, when, where, why) also use the same methods of writing a main story in the sense that you can’t be biased and have to verify that all the content is factually accurate. Also following the correct tone. As the story will be small the sentences are only short and snappy therefore no need for punctuation like commas. In reflection of having an attempt at writing a NIB, I feel slightly better as I now know what is required and the basic structure. This will help to make me a better practitioner of writing these for the supplement.

Learning How to Write Introductions

In a recent session, we learned the basics to what makes a newsworthy story and how we can set the tones for the stories at hand. We also had an introduction into how to write the first couple of paragraphs of a news story. I found this challenging however at the same time enjoyable. This is the type of things I needed to learn to help me to become a sports writer.

The basic rules that are essentially for writing high professional standard introductions for print (Newspapers) are to make sure they are written in the format for that style of newspaper. Making sure the tone is right and matches the type of story that is being written. If it’s a serious story, make sure this is portrayed thoughts the words used. Also making sure it is short, snappy straight to the point by using the 5W, H techniques, I learnt that you don’t often see all of them within an introduction but it is best to get as much in. As I am doing a project that requires me to write for Hull Daily Mail ‘Your News supplement’ I need to use as many of the 5W’s, without giving to much away. This is so that it makes the reader more likely to read on after the first paragraph. Also I will also make sure that all spellings are correct and accurate as this is important and helps to keep that professional standard.  For instance, spellings of places and names. Only using names if the person is well known in the public domain, not otherwise till further down the story.

From having a news editor (Charlotte Richardson) as a client in my last course she was very specific about using the ‘Inverted Pyramid’ this means that the most newsworthy parts of a story should be situated at the top and the more irrelevant information further down the article/story. This means that the reader is more likely to be attracted into reading. Generally, people who read news stories read the first couple of paragraphs so by having the most important information at the top means there not missing out. In the image below it shows the structure that a news story should follow in order for it to be written in the correct way.


At first I found it a bit confusing and difficult to get to grips with it, however, by having these skills will allow me to become a better practitioner of my work and to appear to be of that professional standard. It is also vital to make sure your story is of public interest or something that you believe is important for them to gain knowledge of.

When doing my first news story for the Your news supplement, I found it really difficult in the sense that I promoted certain things and I should have done it in the ways that it didn’t promote. Newspaper stories need to be none biased. You shouldn’t give opinions. This was a really good learning curve for me, this means I will try and make sure I don’t make the same mistake twice.

Reflection – Google Alert

I was absent due to ill health on this day so missed the session. However, I left my Dictaphone with a fellow student and she recorded it so I could listen back to the session. From listening back to the recording, I think ‘Google Alerts’ will be great to use as I could set it up to things I want it to alert me about. For instance, it could help me become a better practitioner at journalism because I know what has already been covered, this is a really important aspect of journalism, the news has to be original or fresh or to take a subject from a different angle to what has been covered before. If I don’t get this set up, then it could definitely have implications of me being a journalist and could definitely make my job a whole lot more complicated and harder.

In a recent assignment and task we have been given specific patches to cover in the area for the fairly recent supplement ‘Your News in the Hull Daily Mail. My patches are ‘Beverly Road, Dunswell and Leconfield’ which is why I now need to set ‘Google’ up to alert me whenever they are mentioned.

Introductions of articles

In the last session with Carmen we discussed the importance of a good news article and how the most important information will be situated at the top of the article. As a part of the assessment criteria for this unit we have to write and publish our own NIB’s on what is happening in the patches of Hull we have been allocated. News in briefs are basically an intro of a bigger article. It should be short, snappy and have the (who, what, when, where and why) within it to be a good NIB. I have been asked to find three articles and discuss the introduction structure of the writing. Identifying if the (5 W’s and how) have been used within the opening paragraphs.

The first article I have looked at is a recent publication in the Hull daily mail. It is about a 6-year-old boy that went missing from a local school.


Photo source: Taken from the web page

In the first paragraph it identifies who and what the article was about (a boy that went missing) When was also identified within first couple of sentences (yesterday and an hour later was found) Where was also stated in the first paragraph – went missing from Hall road school and found on Beverly road. How was identified that he cycled away from the school. Why is still unclear within the first couple of paragraphs

The next article I have looked at is on the Mail Online website. It is about a boy that is trapped in a pensioner’s body and weighs 2st.

Photo source: Taken from the web page

Photo source: Taken from the web page

In this article I have found some of the 5W’s. Who (Nihal Bitla) what and why (genetic disorder called Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome (HGPS), where (ho lives on the outskirts of Mumbai, India). Its not clear the when. i personally think this story is captivating so i would definitely read on to find more information out. i believe that the intro is really strong and draws the viewers in.

The last article i found was on the live science website. the article was  about three people who got a nobel prize for new DNA finding.

Photo source: taken from the website

Photo source: Taken from the web page

In this publication there were some of the 5W’s seen within the first couple of paragraphs but not all of them was found. Who (Three scientists) what (nobel prize) why (found a way cells can repair damaged DNA) when and where was not specified in the first couple of paragraphs.