Personal Ethics Code

  1. Ask myself why this story is important and how best to cover it while both presenting the truth and minimizing harm. Go through all aspects of the story and the ethical dilemmas that I might face. Ask myself: Is the story worth the harm it might cause? Consider all stakeholders. How will this story affect them?
  2. Never go into a story adopting a specific position or assuming how the story will play out.
  3. Seek all sides of a story. Remain independent. Strive to question and detach my inherent biases but always stick to the truth.
  4. Remind myself that my loyalty is to the readers and they deserve the truth. It is my job to turn information into knowledge, and know that my work has an impact on the average reader, as well as society as a whole. Thus, strive to be honest, fair and independent.
  5. Be loyal to my sources by keeping my promise of confidentiality. Also remember that my sources and the people I engage with while covering this story are human. Always practice empathy and compassion.
  6. When faced with an ethical dilemma, consider different ways of thinking. Seek the opinion of my editor/organization but also trust my instinct. Believe that I will be able to defend my decision.
  7. Research thoroughly. Verify every fact and piece of data. Do background research on all my sources and take every information given to me with a pinch of salt. Strive for accuracy and seek an opinion about any fact I remain unsure about.
  8. Strive for perfection in grammar, spelling and style. My work will reflect my precision, credibility and dedication to journalism, as well as to my organization. 
  9. Own up to my mistakes when I make them. Hold myself accountable for every detail of my work.
  10. Be fearless.

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