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So the Workers Voice has withdrawn from the Media Council amid a dispute over the publication of a ruling from the Council.

The publication has its reasons for withdrawing and not complying with the ruling, but regardless, it is extremely unfortunate that a member of the organisation has seen fit to effectively snub the rules it voluntarily signed up for.

While it is not a body blow to the Media Council, it could easily undermine its level of authority in the eyes of the public and it was the public it was set up to help protect.

It also means that at least one publication on the Island is no longer regulated in any way other than by the laws of Bermuda. That is not a welcome scenario as the laws are not always easily navigable and using them is invariably expensive, so the public suffers.

No doubt, the Bermuda Industrial Union and those at the Workers Voice will take great exception to this article and although they think the Media Council ruling was wrong, they should reconsider withdrawing their membership — and still print the correction.

It would send the right signal to the public that the media are serious about self-regulation. It would also send a signal to those itching to legislate for regulation that the media can control its own members.

While hardly of Levesonian proportions, it has exposed a weakness that needs remedying immediately.

The Workers Voice must put aside its differences, swallow its pride and give the public the confidence it needs that self-regulation is there and works.

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Published January 30, 2013 at 8:00 am (Updated January 30, 2013 at 8:43 am)

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