SPJ's Ethics Committee's purpose is to encourage the use of the Society's Code of Ethics, which promotes the highest professional standards for journalists of all disciplines. Public concerns are often answered by this committee. It also acts as a spotter for reporting trends in the nation, accumulating case studies of jobs well done under trying circumstances.
More from Code Words:
The Power of Words
Transparency a Must During Harassment Investigations
The Three Missteps of ABC News
Closely organized around the Society of Professional Journalists' code of ethics the news industry's widely accepted "gold standard" of journalism principles this updated edition uses real-life case studies to demonstrate how journalism students and professionals can identify and reason through ethical dilemmas.
Some of journalisms greatest contributions to society are built on the documents and information leaked to news organizations from employees of governments and private organizations. Many reputable news organizations offer secure pathways for people wanting to leak information, and SPJ is building a list to help facilitate the effort.
Members of the Society of Professional Journalists believe that public enlightenment is the forerunner of justice and the foundation of democracy. Ethical journalism strives to ensure the free exchange of information that is accurate, fair and thorough. An ethical journalist acts with integrity.
The Society declares these four principles as the foundation of ethical journalism and encourages their use in its practice by all people in all media.
– Ethics Blogs and Position Papers
– What is ethical journalism and why is it important?
– What do journalists do and who are they?
– Ethical journalism looks like this
– What can you do?
– Learn about secure places to leak information
– Buy the latest ethics textbook
– Host an ethics program, contact our experts and more
– Read ethics case studies
For journalism instructors and others interested in presenting ethical dilemmas for debate and discussion, SPJ has a useful resource. We've been collecting a number of case studies for use in workshops. The Ethics AdviceLine operated by the Chicago Headline Club and Loyola University also has provided a number of examples. There seems to be no shortage of ethical issues in journalism these days. Please feel free to use these examples in your classes, speeches, columns, workshops or other modes of communication.
Using the Holocaust Metaphor
Aaargh! Pirates! (and the Press)
Reigning on the Parade
Controversy over a Concert
Deep Throat, and His Motive
When Sources Wont Talk
A Suspect Confession
Whos the Predator?
The Medias Foul Ball
Publishing Drunk Drivers Photos
Naming Victims of Sex Crimes
A Self-Serving Leak
The Times and Jayson Blair
Cooperating with the Government
A Media-Savvy Killer
A Congressmans Past
Crafting a Policy
This collection of position papers is intended to clarify SPJs position on specific ethical themes that frequently arise in journalism, and also to provide better guidance for journalists, academics, students and the public when consulting SPJ's Code of Ethics.
This collection of position papers, produced by the Society of Professional Journalists Ethics Committee, is intended to clarify SPJs position on specific ethical themes that frequently arise in journalism, and also to provide better guidance for journalists, academics, students and the public when consulting the SPJ Code of Ethics.
The following papers are available for immediate reference, with more on using anonymous sources, undercover reporting, dealing with victims of tragedy, handling diversity coverage, privacy and news media accountability to release over the coming months:
Reporting on Grief, Tragedy and Victims
Using the SPJ Code
SPJs Ethics Committee Blog
Related Articles: Ethics
See archive for more articles
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– Quill: Newsroom ethics discussions dont have to be uncomfortable
– Quill: Ethics: Clarifying terrifying terms
– Quill: Lynn Walsh: Lessons from the Enemy of the People
– SPJ News: The Arizona Republic receives SPJ New America Award for Navajo Housing project
– Quill: Editorial Partnerships Are Great, But Beware Potential Pitfalls
– Quill: Lynn Walsh: SPJ challenges journalists to engage and inform
– SPJ News: SPJ joins groups asking that Gianforte be disciplined for violence against reporter
– SPJ News: National winners announced for 2016 Mark of Excellence Awards
– SPJ News: SPJ sends Code of Ethics to Congress as finale to Ethics Week 2017