Penny Marshall (journalist)
Penny Marshall is a British journalist, working for ITV News as Social Affairs Editor.
She is a graduate of the London School of Economics where she was active as a student journalist. Marshall established herself as a television news foreign correspondent during the 1980s and 90s, when she was based in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union. This work won awards, including an RTS, an EMMY, and a BAFTA.
She is now a regular presenter and writer for BBC Radio 4. She is also a Visiting Professor of Journalism at City University, London. She remained a Specialist Correspondent for ITN's ITV News at Ten, for whom she has continued to cover major stories as a freelance contributor, until January 2012, when Penny was appointed Social Affairs Editor.
In the summer of 1992 Marshall, together with Channel 4 News' Ian Williams, were the first television journalists to uncover the Serb-run detention camps in Bosnia. Ed Vulliamy of The Guardian was also with the ITN teams. Their subsequent reports and pictures, shown throughout the world, generated an international outcry. The TV report won the International News Award for 1992 at the Royal Television Society TV Journalism Awards.
Penny Marshall has received Gold and Silver Medals at the Annual Film & Television Festival of New York, and joint top prize - with Ian Williams - in the News and Actuality category from BAFTA. They also received a special award from Broadcast magazine. In addition they jointly won an Emmy, one of America's top television awards, for Outstanding Investigative Journalism at that year's News and Documentary Emmy Awards.
Fraud accusations 
LM Magazine (formerly known as Living Marxism), in an article by Thomas Deichmann, claimed that the video tapes, which have brought international recognition to Marshall and Williams, were fraudulent. The article specifically said: "There was no barbed wire fence surrounding Trnopolje camp. It was not a prison, and certainly not a 'concentration camp', but a collection centre for refugees, many of whom went there seeking safety and could leave again if they wished. The barbed wire in the picture is not around the Bosnian Muslims; it is around the cameraman and the journalists."
In March 2000, Marshall and Ian Williams were each awarded £150,000, and ITN won £75,000, from LM Magazine in a High Court libel case against the magazine. An examination of the case by a professor of cultural and political geography at Durham University argues that the key claims made by Deichmann and LM were "erroneous and flawed".
Despite these critiques the High Court in London confirmed in March 2000 that Deichmann was right in argueing, that there was no barbed wire fence surrounding Trnopolje and the Muslims filmed there in August 1992 and that the barbed wire on the ITN pictures belonged to a small agricultural compound neighbouring the camp grounds. Deichmann’s explanation that the British reporters stood inside this compound and that from inside there they filmed the pictures was also confirmed. High Court Judge Morland stressed this with his own words to the jury: ‘It is a matter for you but, having seen the rushes and the bundles of Mr. Deichmann’s photographs, is it not clear that before the civil war there was fencing surrounding the area containing the barn, the garage and the electricity transformer? That fence was made of tall metal posts with barbed wire strands on top, and below chicken wire, with a gate on the east road. Clearly Ian Williams and Penny Marshall and their TV teams were mistaken in thinking they were not enclosed by the old barbed wire fence.’ Judge Morland elaborated at this point of his summary: ‘But does it matter?’ By raising this question he wished to remind the members of the jury what this libel case was about. The central question which the jury had to decide on was this: did the ITN reporters in 1992 deliberately publish a misleading image. The case therefore did not mainly consider if this happened or not, instead it dealt first of all with the question if the reporters publicized their barbed wire shots with the intent to mislead the public. The Judge defined at the beginning of his summation what this libel case was about: ‘Members of the jury, you may well think that in a democratic society it is vital that journalists are fearless, investigative reporters. It is, you may well think, of the utmost importance that they are accurate and fair reporters. It is right that one journalist, if he considers that another journalist has been inaccurate, unfair and misleading, should say so. But this case, you may think, is not about whether Penny Marshall and Ian Williams have been inaccurate, unfair or misleading; the nub of this case is whether the defendants have established that Penny Marshall and Ian Williams have deliberately – I emphasize that word ‚deliberately’ – compiled misleading television footage.’ LM could not prove a deliberate mistake and lost the case.
Yugoslav/Serb TV produced a documentary which allegedly exposes Marshall's crew's fraud.
- Penny Marshall at itv.com
- Penny Marshall on Twitter
- We did not fool the world: Richard Tait defends ITN against the charge that it is a giant bullying a dwarf, The Spectator, May 24, 1997 (dead link Dec 2011)