By Ron Howells • 01 September 2021 • 11:41
Piers Morgan triumphs over Meghan Markle in Ofcom complaint row that led to his GMB exit
Piers Morgan triumphed over Meghan Markle in an Ofcom complaint row that led to his sudden departure from Good Morning Britain.
Ofcom, the UK’s communications regulator, has ruled that Good Morning Britain was not in breach of the broadcasting code over Piers Morgan’s comments about the Duchess of Sussex’s ‘bombshell’ interview with Oprah Winfrey.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex filed a complaint to Ofcom after Piers remarked that he didn’t believe Meghan’s claims that she experienced suicidal thoughts and was given no help by the Palace when she sought help.
Explaining the ruling in a 97-page long document, the broadcasting regulator said that while Piers’ comments were ‘potentially harmful and offensive’, Good Morning Britain did not breach the broadcasting code.
Now, Ofcom says that Piers was entitled to share his opinions.
Moments after the news broke, Piers – who famously quickly exited GMB after the row – tweeted about his happiness over the ruling.
The controversial TV host wrote:
“BREAKING: @Ofcom rejects all complaints against me over Meghan Markle furore that led to my exit from @GMB . Verdict says I was entitled to disbelieve her & Prince Harry & to restrict my right to do so would be a ‘chilling restriction on freedom of expression.”
The ruling read:
‘This was a finely balanced decision. Mr Morgan’s comments were potentially harmful and offensive to viewers, and we recognise the strong public reaction to them. But we also took full account of freedom of expression. Under our rules, broadcasters can include controversial opinions as part of legitimate debate in the public interest, and the strong challenge to Mr Morgan from other contributors provided important context for viewers.
‘Nonetheless, we’ve reminded ITV to take greater care around content discussing mental health and suicide in future. ITV might consider the use of timely warnings or signposting of support services to ensure viewers are properly protected.’
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Ron actually started his working career as an Ophthalmic Technician- things changed when, during a band rehearsal, his amplifier blew up and he couldn’t get it fixed so he took a course at Birmingham University and ended up doing a degree course. He built up a chain of electronics stores and sold them as a franchise over 35 years ago. After five years touring the world Ron decided to move to Spain with his wife and son, a place they had visited over the years, and only bought the villa they live in because it has a guitar-shaped swimming pool!.
Playing the guitar since the age of 7, he can often be seen, (and heard!) at beach bars and clubs along the length of the coast. He has always been interested in the news and constantly thrives to present his articles in an interesting and engaging way.
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