Code of Practice – How to make a complaint
All programme content on Clare FM (news, talk, music, advertisements, etc) is regulated by Coimisiún na Meán and we adhere to the various codes that are in place from time to time.
Clare FM welcomes feedback and invites any listener to make an official written complaint if they reasonably feel that the station has broadcast material which breaches the codes that apply to radio broadcasters. On receiving a valid complaint, this station will respond to the complainant at the address supplied.
There are a range of matters which complaints can concern:
• Harm, offence, incitement, and authority of State (section 46J)
• Privacy (section 46K)
• News and Current Affairs (section 46L)
• Advertising (sections 46M(2) or (3), 106(3) and 127(6))
• Retention of copies of programme material (section 46P(1) or (2))
• Media service codes and rules
Complaints can be emailed to [email protected]
What can I complain about?
You may submit a complaint to us if you are of the opinion that a broadcast or part of a broadcast on our service has breached one or more of the following obligations:
1 – News
We will ensure that our news programming is objective and impartial without any expression of our own views.
2 – Current affairs
We will ensure that our current affairs programming is:
- objective and impartial without any expression of our own views; and
- will treat the subject matter and all interests concerned fairly.
If we cannot achieve fairness, objectivity and impartiality in one current affairs programme, we will do so in related broadcasts that will be broadcast within a reasonable period of each other.
3 – Programmes
We will ensure that our programming does not contain any content which may reasonably be regarded as
- causing harm or offence;
- tending to promote, or incite crime;
- tending to undermine the authority of the State; or
- unreasonably encroach upon the privacy of an individual.
We also will ensure programming is in compliance with the CnaM Code of Programme Standards.
4 – Commercial Communications
All commercial communications broadcast by us will be in compliance with the CnaM General Commercial Communications Code and the CnaM Children’s Commercial Communications Code.
An advertising/commercial complaint form is available here: Advertising Complaint Form.
If your complaint concerns alleged defamation, you should refer to the CnaM Right of Reply Scheme.
How do I make a complaint?
You can first contact us by telephone on 065 682 8888 or email us at [email protected] or by letter and inform us of your complaint. A member of our staff will contact you to discuss what concerns you and attempt to resolve the matter to your satisfaction. If we cannot resolve your complaint to your satisfaction, and you are satisfied that your complaint is covered by this Code of Practice, you should submit the following details in writing (letter or email):
- your name and address;
- the category of complaint; (please refer to the categories of complaints in ‘What I can complain about?’ above)
- the date and time of broadcast;
- the name of the programme, news item or advertisement/commercial communication that you have heard and which is the subject of your complaint;
- detail exactly what, in the broadcast, concerned you;
We are committed to protecting the rights and privacy of individuals in accordance with the Data Protection Acts 1988 – 2003.
In order for your complaint to be accepted and considered, it must include the above details and must refer to a programme, advertisement or another form of commercial communication already broadcast on our service.
To assist a ‘Programming Content Complaint Form’ is available to download below. If, by reason of disability or other good reason, you are unable to submit the complaint in writing, please contact us and we will assist you to do so.
We will not accept complaints that we deem to be of a frivolous or vexatious nature.
How soon should I make my complaint after the broadcast?
The Broadcasting Act, 2009 requires you to make your complaint not more than 30 days after the date of broadcast:
- if your complaint relates to one broadcast, 30 days after the date of that broadcast;
- if your complaint relates to two or more unrelated broadcasts; 30 days after the date of the earlier or earliest of those broadcasts;
- if your complaint relates to two or more related broadcasts of which at least two are made on different dates; 30 days after the date of the later or latest of those broadcasts.
Complaints submitted outside of these time periods cannot be considered
Where should I send my complaint?
The Chief Executive,
Email [email protected]
What will happen to my complaint?
Once we have accepted your complaint we will work to resolve the issue/s as soon as possible. Your complaint will be carefully considered, investigated if necessary, and responded to in writing by our Programme Controller or a senior member of our programming team.
- We will write to you to acknowledge receipt of your complaint within 7 working days.
- We will consider the issues raised in your complaint.
- We will listen to the programme/broadcast item identified in your complaint.
- Where appropriate, we will consult with any party to which your complaint relates, for example, the advertiser, the presenter or programme maker, to give that party an opportunity to provide observations and comments in relation to the issues raised by you.
- We will provide a response to your complaint which will, as far as possible, address all of the issues/concerns you have raised. We will set out the reasons for our decision on your complaint.
- This response will be sent to you within 21 days from receipt of your complaint.
What are the potential outcomes for my complaint?
We may uphold or reject a complaint. Upholding a complaint means that we believe that our programming did not comply with our obligations covered by this Code of Practice. Rejecting a complaint means we believe that our programming was in compliance with our obligations.
If we uphold your complaint, we will seek to resolve it to your satisfaction in an agreed manner. The manner of resolution will be decided on a case-by-case basis but may include an apology, correction, clarification and/or the offer of a rebuttal.
The role of Coimisiún na Meán
If you are not satisfied with the response provided by us or if no response is provided within the timeframe of 20 working days, you can refer your complaint to Coimisiún na Meán (CnaM). This must be done within 14 days after the initial window for a response from the station has elapsed. CnaM will consider the complaint and may carry out an independent review of the complaint and our response. Information on how to refer a complaint to CnaM is available on the CnaM website at www.cnam.ie or from the following address:
Coimisiún na Meán,
2 – 5 Warrington Place,
Phone: (01) 6441200,
E-mail: [email protected]
Record of Complaints
We are required under the Broadcasting Act, 2009 to keep a record of all complaints submitted in accordance with this Code of Practice for two years. We are also obliged to provide these records to the Compliance Committee of the BAI if the Committee so directs.
Our records will include copies of your complaint, our response/s and the audio copies of the broadcast material.
The BAI implements broadcasting codes and standards and supports Irish audiences to hold broadcasters to account
General Commercial Communications Code
The General Commercial Communications Code deals with advertising, sponsorship, product placement and other forms of commercial promotion.
This code came into effect on the 1st of June 2017. Click here for more info…
Code of Programme Standards
The main aims of the Code of Programme Standards is to promote responsible broadcasting and to advise viewers on the standards they can expect from broadcasting services and to enable viewers and listeners to hold broadcasters to account in the event they believe that a broadcaster has behaved irresponsibly.
Code of Fairness, Objectivity & Impartiality
This code deals with matters of fairness, objectivity and impartiality in news and current affairs content.
Making and/or referring a complaint
Any viewer or listener should refer a complaint directly to the relevant broadcaster, in the first instance, if they are not happy about broadcasting content on that service. Complaints may be made to broadcasters under any of the following categories:
Anything which may reasonably be regarded as causing harm or offence, or anything being likely to promote, or incite to, crime, or as tending to undermine the authority of the State.
Harmful or offensive material, in particular, programme material in respect of the portrayal of violence and sexual conduct shall be presented with due sensitivity to the convictions or feelings of the audience and with due regard to the impact of such programming on the physical, mental or moral development of children.
How to make a complaint
All complaints made under any of the above categories must be made in accordance with the procedures detailed in the Code of Practice for Complaints Handling published on the website of the relevant broadcaster. Please read the Guide and download the Form.
Download the Guide for Complainants
Download the Complaint Form
Right of Reply Scheme
The Right of Reply Scheme has been developed by the BAI to provide for the correction of incorrect facts or information that has been broadcast about a person, where the assertions of such incorrect facts or information have impugned that person’s honour or reputation.
A Right of Reply is about the correction of incorrect facts or information; it does not provide for the broadcast of an alternative or contrary opinion. In other words, a person may not be satisfied with the manner in which a broadcaster has relayed information about him/her, but a Right of Reply will not be granted unless the facts or information are factually incorrect such that their honour or reputation have been impugned.
If the matter is one where the facts were correct, but not fairly presented, and was contained in a news or current affairs programme, you can make a complaint under fairness, objectivity and impartiality.
Download the Right of Reply Scheme
Under the Scheme and only in certain circumstances, a member of the public may request the Compliance Committee of the BAI to review a decision of a broadcaster not to grant a Right of Reply. Information on the review process can be found in the Right of Reply Scheme.
Interested parties seeking a review should complete this form