Guiding Ethical Principles

Guiding Principles as they appear in The New Ethics of Journalism by Kelly McBride and Tom Rosenstiel, pp. 2-3:

1. Seek truth and report it as fully as possible.

    • Be vigorous in your pursuit of accuracy.
    • Be honest, fair and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting information.
    • Give voice to the voiceless; document the unseen.
    • Hold the powerful accountable, especially those who hold power over free speech and expression.
    • Be accountable.

2. Be transparent.

    • Show how the reporting was done and why people should believe it. Explain your sources, evidence and the choices you made. Reveal what you cannot know. Make intellectual honesty your guide and humility (rather than false omniscience) your asset.
    • Cleary articulate your journalistic approach, whether you strive for independence or approach information from a political or philosophical point of view. Describe how your point of view impacts the information you report, including how you select the topics you cover and the sources that inform your work.
    • Acknowledge mistakes and errors, correct them quickly and in a way that encourages people who consumed the faulty information to know the truth.

3. Engage community as an end, rather than as a means.

    • Make an ongoing effort to understand the needs of the community you seek to serve and create robust mechanisms to allow members of your community to communicate with you and one another.
    • Recognize that good ethical decisions require individual responsibility enriched by collaboration.
    • Seek publishing alternatives that minimize harm that results from your actions and be compassionate and empathetic toward those affected by your work.
    • Allow and encourage members of the community to self-inform. Make journalism a continuing dialogue in which everyone can responsibly take part and be informed.

One thought on “Guiding Ethical Principles

  1. Pingback: Book Review: New Ethics of Journalism | Talking Ethics

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