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The Australian Press Council is responsible for promoting good standards of media practice, community access to information of public interest, and freedom of expression through the media. The Council is the principal body with responsibility for responding to complaints about Australian newspapers, magazines and associated digital outlets.
In accordance with its Constitution, the Council pursues these goals by
Download a copy of the Press Council's information brochure here.
Watch a video about the aims and activities of the Press Council
The Council’s standards of good media practice are contained in its Statements of Principles, Specific Standards and Advisory Guidelines. The standards are applied by the Council when considering complaints and are used as the basis for statements by Council representatives about good media practice, whether addressing practitioners within the industry, journalism students or the broader community. The Council also undertakes research and convenes conferences and seminars on aspects of media standards.
For further details about the Council’s work in developing and monitoring standards, see Standards
The Council’s mandate to consider complaints extends to all print publications and related digital outlets, such as websites, of publishers which are "constituent bodies" of the Council. Publications by these publishers comprise about 90 per cent of all print media sales in Australia. For further details, see Constituent Bodies and their Publications.
The Council currently receives more than 700 complaints each year. About three-quarters of those which are fully pursued by the complainant result in a correction, apology or some other form of action being taken. Click here for some examples of complaints being resolved without adjudication.
Where the complaint cannot be resolved without a formal adjudication, the relevant publisher is required to publish the adjudication promptly and with due prominence. Click here for a list of recent adjudications.
For further details about how to make a complaint, how complaints are handled and the outcomes of complaints, see Complaints.
The Council issues statements on policy matters within its areas of interest, including through submissions to parliamentary committees, commissions and other public bodies. It also undertakes research and convenes or participates in conferences and seminars on policy issues.
For further detail about developing and promoting policy, see Policy