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Complainant Name:
Miss Emma Amelia Pearl Czikai

Clauses Noted: 1

Publication: Daily Mail

Complaint:

Miss Emma Amelia Pearl Czikai - a former auditionee on the TV show Britain's Got Talent - complained to the Press Complaints Commission that amendments made to an online article about her tribunal proceedings against Simon Cowell's company, Simco, and the show's producers, Freemantle Media, in order to clarify her position had not adhered to the due prominence requirement of Clause 1(ii) of the Code.

She said that, as a sufferer of cervical spine neuritis, she experiences symptoms similar to a hang over which - in the absence of appropriate sound settings - can cause hypersensitivity of hearing and head pain, preventing her from hearing properly to sing. She said that she was an interviewee competing for one of many short-term employment contracts, and by failing to make reasonable adjustments for her condition, the show had breached the Disability Discrimination Act 1995. She added that despite a further appearance on Britain's Got More Talent - which proved that she could sing in a fair environment - the show continued to sell her original audition, giving a false impression of her singing ability. She said that the two appearances had not been linked, as was promised, and that linking the appearances would have mitigated against reasonably foreseeable resulting damage.

Miss Czikai was concerned that readers would not be fully aware of the facts of her case. She said that the matter had been reported in light-heartened manner, which did not reflect the strength and seriousness of her claims. She said that all parties to the legal proceedings have been notified that the Tribunal hopes to hear the case in mid-July, and that a case management discussion is scheduled for the end of April, when the hearing date will hopefully be finalised.

Resolution:

Although the newspaper did not accept any breach of the Code, the complaint was resolved when the PCC helped to negotiate further additions to the online article (including a line to inform readers that an earlier version had been amended), which the newspaper agreed to as a gesture of goodwill.

Miss Czikai thanked the PCC and the Daily Mail for their kindness in dealing with her complaint so sensitively and amicably.

Date Published: 09/04/2010



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