Complaints and feedback

Complaints and feedback

Central Coast Newspapers take complaints and feedback seriously. We sincerely seek to find a satisfactory resolution to any legitimate complaint from any of our readers. Likewise, we respectfully accept all feedback from our readers and advertisers.

Context

Central Coast Newspapers strives to provide an important information service to the broad local population, and in doing so, we ask all our readers to consider the broad and varied views and experiences of other locals.

We strive not to take the side of any particular party in any story and follow a close series of editorial policies. Should you feel we have not adhered to our own policies or other reasonable community norms we welcome your enquiry or complaint.

We understand that some stories or advertisements are not to everyone’s liking, whether that is an unsavoury story, a political reference or an advertisement promoting something that you find offensive.

NB: If your complaint is about your account with us please contact our accounts section, details can be found on your invoice or statement. 

 

Please try to call us as a first step

Over the years we have found that complaints about anything in any of our newspapers are rare. However, the few that we have had were able to be rectified over the telephone, with a discussion with the responsible editor, journalist or manager. Please call 02 4325 7369 during office hours to discuss any grievance with us directly. Ideally you should speak to a senior journalist or the manager to ensure that any problem that you may have is dealt with properly.

Emails and letters

Should you not be able to get through to us on the phone, or if you prefer, you can either write a letter or email the information to us. Please mark the email or letter with the words ‘Complaint’ prominently so we can prioritise the process. Contact information appears on page 2 of every newspaper and on our websites.

NB: Please do not rely on other communication methods ie. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or other messaging platforms. These platforms are not always monitored by the appropriate editors or managers.

Guidelines for complainants

Please identify yourself to us as clearly as possible. While we appreciate that you may just wish to give us feedback, we wish to acknowledge your efforts and want to address you directly using your correct name (and spelling) and your accurate contact details. If you are writing on behalf of someone else, or a group of people, please bring that to our attention and in what capacity you are writing (eg. as President of a community association or similar).

Please identify if you wish to keep your name withheld from the issue and the reasons why. While the nature of a free press is to promote open and reasonable debate in a transparent fashion, we appreciate that in some circumstances withholding your name from the public debate is justified. We will however not publish letters or other information received anonymously.

Please identify the issue in as clear a fashion as you can. We do know that this can sometimes be easier said than done, though it is important for us to be able to answer your concerns as specifically as we are able.

Please identify the date(s) that are relevant to the feedback/complaint. Alternatively, you can quote our issue numbers, printed on all our mastheads in the top righthand corner of the front page. Only dates are published on digital publications.

Please outline a suggested solution to your grievance. This may be: requesting a retraction; issuing an apology; amending spelling or grammar; or, changing our future practices. You may, more simply wish to give us important feedback. While we cannot guarantee that we will be in agreement with your suggested resolution, we will take it into serious consideration and use it as a basis for our reply to you.

What happens next?

As mentioned above, we hope that we will be able to sort out a resolution over the phone. However:

If you have sent correspondence as outlined above, we will first acknowledge your complaint. We will then respond to the complaint in reasonable time. If you feel that we have not responded in reasonable time, you are welcome to enquire as to the progress of your complaint.

We will contact you with our deliberations outlining any eventual actions we will or will not take.

If you are not satisfied with our conclusions you are welcome to challenge our assessment of your complaint within 14 days of receiving our correspondence. We will consider the matter and respond.

If you are still not satisfied we encourage you to contact the Australian Press Council for editorial complaints or the Australian Communications & Media Authority (ACMA) for online advertising complaints. For other advertising complaints, the Advertising Standards Beaureu may be contacted. These organisations have structured grievance procedures that you may follow after receiving advice. While Central Coast Newspapers is not a financial member of the Australian Press Council, we respect the integrity of the APC and will take their guidance very seriously. We will aso take guidance from ACMA in their regulatory capacity. We will likewise take guidance from Adstandards Australia.