Experience The News

We’re organizing an online community to elevate trusted voices on all sides, so that you can be fully informed.

Editorial Code of Conduct
We’re open to learning. The news industry is constantly evolving and, as such, our guidelines may shift to reflect the rest of the market. We anticipate that these guidelines will be revisited and updated, internally, from time to time. But we will always be open to suggestions, criticism, and corrections from our audience.
We’re clear and transparent. When you have a question about editorial standards or need to discern if there is an exception, speak with your superiors.
We hold ourselves, our peers, our industry, and our story subjects accountable.
We want to maintain trust with our audience. That means maintaining quality and consistency throughout our work will help us maintain and grow our audience.
We’re decent and fair. Our work’s goal is not intended to hurt our audience, but to inform them and facilitate the national discussion around news.
We maintain excellence in everything we do. We expect the highest standards at all levels of the editorial process, and we aim to improve every day.
We inform, inspire, impact, and innovate. Through our work, we aim to spark a national conversation and share it with others.

The Trust Project is collaborating with 14 leading news organizations to implement the first phase of the Trust Protocol. After the Phase I Tech MVP has been released, news organizations will advance to the Trust Project MVP, which is the minimum requirement for membership in the Trust Project for 2018. We recommend implementation of the full Trust Protocol, which adds Local, Diversity and Actionable Feedback Trust Indicators to the overall suite.
The MVPs were developed collaboratively with the Trust Project community and our News Leadership Council, taking into account user needs, Trust Project priorities, technical complexity, newsroom resources and technology platform interests.

Diversity
MGA is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to a policy of equal employment opportunity. Our Company does not discriminate nor does it permit discrimination against employees or applicants on any basis including — but not limited to — race, age, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital or familial status, national origin, disability, genetic information, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. All employees are responsible for complying with all applicable federal, state and local laws, rules, and regulations regarding nondiscrimination practices.
MGA complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act, as amended by the ADA Amendments Act, and all applicable state and local laws and is committed to providing equal employment opportunities to qualified individuals with disabilities. Consistent with this commitment, the Company will provide a reasonable accommodation to disabled applicants and employees if the reasonable accommodation would allow the individual to perform the essential functions of the job, unless doing so would create an undue hardship. Employees who believe they need an accommodation because of a disability should contact Human Resources to request an accommodation.
Keeping Sources Anonymous
MGA complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act, as amended by the ADA Amendments Act, and all applicable state and local laws and is committed to providing equal employment opportunities to qualified individuals with disabilities. Consistent with this commitment, the Company will provide a reasonable accommodation to disabled applicants and employees if the reasonable accommodation would allow the individual to perform the essential functions of the job, unless doing so would create an undue hardship. Employees who believe they need an accommodation because of a disability should contact Human Resources to request an accommodation.
Additionally, commentary from private figures (ex. “9 Moms Share Their Best Tricks to Get Babies to Sleep”) do not require full names — you can use just their first name. When speaking to minors, obtain approval from their parents or guardians first.
Reliable Sources and Fact-checking
Stick to using direct witnesses or newsmakers themselves as sources. Avoid second- and third-hand sources unless their claims can be confirmed by others. (See “Keeping Sources Anonymous” for more information.) Writers and reporters are responsible for ensuring that their work is factually accurate. Additionally, each article and its sources are checked for accuracy and correctness by an editor before publication.
Plagarism and Fabrication
IJR does not tolerate plagiarism under any circumstances. We define plagiarism as the use of others’ work without attribution, whether that is found in a published article or a draft submitted to editors for publishing. If a writer has been found to have used others’ work without attribution, it may lead to a complete review of that author’s work.
Similarly, IJR does not tolerate the fabrication of news under any circumstances. That means we don’t tolerate lies or fabrications in copy or throughout the story process (ex. lying about why you left the office, faking sources, misleading your editors).
Quotations
Quotations must be accurate and exact. If editing a quote is necessary for clarity’s sake, avoid editing in a way that deceives the reader and/or misrepresents the person quoted. Edits to original quotes should always be marked by brackets and/or ellipsis.
Breaking News
Labelling national breaking news in a headline or on company social media is reserved for stories that have broken within an hour and a half of publishing. This does not apply to exclusive breaking news, which we can label on our own terms. Labelling as such is at the discretion of a News editor. The writer is responsible for updating a breaking story until it reaches full development. Coordinate with a News editor about when you should stop updating the story, and whether a secondary story is necessary.
Corrections
Factual corrections to copy that has already been posted must include a correction at the bottom of the page.Typos that are fixed and reformatting for cosmetic purposes do not require correction notes at the end of the story. Egregious or frequent factual errors may lead to a complete review of that author’s work.
Ethical Storytelling
Writers have a duty to uphold agreements of being on or off the record with their sources. If a source is essential but cannot be named, IJR will not be intimidated by public relations officials, politicians, or attorneys in order to give away their sources. Editors and executives may request writers reveal the identity of their sources to them in order to know how best to proceed.
Conflicts of Interest
Writers, editors, and reporters should disclose to their editor or manager any information that they feel will be a conflicting interest. This may include previous paid speeches, appearances, or engagements; paid travel; advertising relationships; prior or current political organization affiliations; current or previous activism; and other employers or sources of income.
Obeying the Law
All writers are expected to obey the law when pursuing stories. If you’re unsure if your newsgathering activities follow local, state, or federal law, consult with your editor for approval prior to any of the said newsgathering activities. Laws about recording without permission from all parties varies by state, but a story subject should always be aware that they are being recorded. If a special situation arises, seek editorial approval.
Personal Conduct
Using a fake name, fake credentials, a fake title, or falsely identifying yourself in any professional capacity is strictly prohibited. Use your real name and formal title at IJR when working in a professional capacity. If you’re working on an investigative story that requires you to veil certain aspects of your identity, it must explicitly be noted within the story and you must seek editorial approval prior to pursuing the story.
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