Nine online publications breached suicide reporting rules, the Press Complaints Commission (PCC) has ruled.

Mirror Online, Sun Online, Telegraph.co.uk, Mail Online, Metro.co.uk, Independent.co.uk, thelondonpaper.com, dailyrecord.co.uk and the crawleyobserver.co.uk were found to have given 'excessive' information in reporting the death of a man who decapitated himself using a chainsaw, when reporting the inquest in November 2008.

The print editions of the Sun, Daily Star and Daily Mirror newspapers were also said to have infringed the code.

The Guardian and the Metro newspapers were not found to have breached the PCC code.

A release from the PCC said the news articles conflicted with clause 5 of the code, which was introduced to 'minimise the risk of copycat suicides'. Editors should avoid publishing excessive detail about methods of suicide according to the clause.

"In this case, the newspapers in question had gone further than a simple reference to the fact that the man had used a chainsaw to kill himself. In particular, they had described the manner in which the chainsaw had been activated and positioned," the PCC release said.

Although it was acknowledged that the publications had used information from the inquest supplied by a news agency, the PCC said that was not a 'sufficient defence'.

"Indeed, this case demonstrated the importance of the editing process in removing excessive detail before publication - both online and offline," the PCC said in the release.

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