Cracking the Code to Accountable and Ethical Journalism

Public trust in the media has never been so critical as it is today. Yet between the many business and political pressures facing the journalism industry – notably in trying to keep to speed with the rapid communications online – this sacred public trust is at an all-time low. There must be a revitalization of ethical communications if society is to protect both the integrity of journalism and free expression. For this to occur, media must strengthen their foundation by continuing to develop and enforce their codes of ethics.

But do codes of ethics really work in a practical sense? How can not only journalists, but anyone online or offline who regularly commits act of journalism learn from international legacy media codes and incorporate these practices into their own daily communications?

This online debate broadcast on 23 November 2015 examined the reality of ethics in the media and lay out a framework for how individuals and media can incorporate codes of ethics to increase their value in a democratic society. The debate was part of the launch of the Accountable Journalism database, which provides an easy way for journalists and editors to research ethical concepts.

Randy Picht, Executive Director of the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute

Stefanie Chernow, Communications Officer of the Ethical Journalism Network

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