Idle No More protesters call Winnipeg Sun reporting biased

A crowd of Idle No More protesters braved the cold on Saturday to demonstrate outside a local newspaper's office for what they're calling biased coverage of First Nations issues.

There were about 50 people participating in the peaceful rally by the Winnipeg Sun's office on Church Avenue, and Monique Woroniak was one of them.

She told CBC News she believes that Sun Media in general is biased in its reporting, but she says that isn't the worst part.

"The comment boards, [on the newspaper's website] they refuse to mediate in any meaningful way," said Woroniak.

"That allows people to anonymously post really hate-filled, racist speech on the site...it's been going on for years."

The newspaper released a statement Saturday stating, "As a member of the news media, the Winnipeg Sun has a duty to inform its readers about the events and issues that may affect them. We also have a right to comment on the issues of the day."

The statement continues by saying the paper understands the opinions expressed in their pages or website may not be shared by all people reading them.

"In the interest of freedom of speech and in order to promote lively, real-time discussion of issues among our readers, the Winnipeg Sun allows comments to be posted directly to our website, without editing or pre-moderation. In exchange for this freedom, we put the onus on our readers to flag offensive comments, at which time we review them and, if necessary, remove them."

The paper said those that make comments found to be guilty of slander, racism or homophobia are barred from commenting on the website.

The Winnipeg Sun said it has invited organizers of Saturday's protest to express their concerns in a full-page commentary in an upcoming issue of the paper.

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