Dealing with viewers’ complaints: Role, visibility and transparency of PSB Ombudsmen in ten European countries

Dolors Palau-Sampio


The article shows the results of a comparative analysis of the complaints management mechanisms offered by ten European Public Service Broadcasting (PSB) systems on their corporate websites. Using a qualitative methodology, it maps the procedures and evaluates the visibility, transparency and dissemination of results. The findings show, firstly, great diversity in terms of responsible election and management, despite the converging media governance. Also noteworthy is the margin of substantial improvement in the transparency and dissemination possibilities, specially relating to the interaction offered by the digital environment. Among the ten public corporations analysed, the BBC is the best ranked, while RAI presents the worst performance. Finally, the comparative analysis shows some correlation within the Hallin and Mancini Mediterranean model, but less are evident among the countries included in the Liberal and Democratic Corporate model.


Accountability, Ombudsman, social responsibility, transparency, visibility, Western European Public Service Broadcasting

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