Our five core principles of ethical journalism

1.

Truth & Accuracy

Journalists cannot always guarantee ‘truth’, but getting the facts right is the cardinal principle of journalism. We should always strive for accuracy, give all the relevant facts we have and ensure that they have been checked. When we cannot corroborate information we should say so.

2.

Independence

Journalists must be independent voices; we should not act, formally or informally, on behalf of special interests whether political, corporate or cultural. We should declare to our editors – or the audience – any of our political affiliations, financial arrangements or other personal information that might constitute a conflict of interest.

3.

Fairness and Impartiality

Most stories have at least two sides. While there is no obligation to present every side in every piece, stories should be balanced and add context. Objectivity is not always possible, and may not always be desirable (in the face for example of brutality or inhumanity), but impartial reporting builds trust and confidence.

4.

Humanity

Journalists should do no harm. What we publish or broadcast may be hurtful, but we should be aware of the impact of our words and images on the lives of others.

5.

Accountability

A sure sign of professionalism and responsible journalism is the ability to hold ourselves accountable. When we commit errors we must correct them and our expressions of regret must be sincere not cynical. We listen to the concerns of our audience. We may not change what readers write or say but we will always provide remedies when we are unfair.

Our people

Board of Trustees

EJN Network

Committees

Aims, Objectives and Activities

The Ethical Journalism Network (EJN) is an international network of media professionals created to advance education, particularly education in ethics and respect for human rights.


It is founded in the underlying belief that ethics and respect for human rights, particularly freedom of expression, is a core element of democracy. Intrinsic to this is an independent, pluralist media sector rooted in respect for human rights and where journalists work freely is essential for a democratic society.


The EJN aims to advance education in and around the principles of ethical journalism, for example, education in ethics and human rights.


All materials will be freely available for the benefit of users and journalists in order to strengthen and support journalism on all platforms throughout the world.


The EJN is an independent body with no political affiliations or ideological aims.
With this in mind the Ethical Journalism Network is registered as a Charity and limited liability company in the United Kingdom with the following objective:


To promote for the public benefit high ethical standards in journalism, based on principles of truth and accuracy, independence, fairness and impartiality, humanity and accountability by the provision of education and training of journalists and the publication of useful research.


In order to further the above objective, the EJN carries out activities and programmes:

  • To advance the education, skills and competence of people engaged in all forms of journalistic work at all levels of media and across all platforms of media throughout the world;
  1. To raise awareness among journalists and media professionals through education of the importance of ethics, human rights and good governance in the exercise of journalism and the administration of news media;
  2. To encourage dialogue between journalists, media and others on the value of informed, ethical journalism in advancing human rights, conflict resolution and promotion of racial tolerance, equality and diversity;
  3. To strengthen through education the capacity of media professional groups in their promotion of ethical standards and good governance in the monitoring and supervision of journalism.

In pursuit of these activities the EJN shall, in all aspects of its work:
Promote respect for the status of journalism by enhancing levels of skill and knowledge of ethical principles within media, particularly through training and education of journalists, media managers and owners;
Prepare reports on the current ethical challenges and governance issues affecting journalists and their work, through information sharing; country missions; targeted research; and distribution of reports and materials on matters of contemporary concern to journalists and media professionals which will be freely available to all;
Strengthen co-operation between media professional groups at national, regional and international level and to work, as appropriate, with other relevant governmental, intergovernmental and non-governmental organisations in this regard;
Organise and encourage educational activities and knowledge exchanges between the media community and civil society on the EJN and its work.

Governance and Administration

The EJN is a non-profit entity and is registered as a company (7 June 2013) and a Charity (2016) in the United Kingdom and is governed by a Board of Trustees which meets at least four times a year.


The Board of Trustees, confirmed at the EJN Annual General Meeting on 3 December 2020, in London, is made up of Christopher Hird, Chair; Ashok Gupta, Treasurer; Ayshah Tull; Bernt Olufsen; Chris Elliott; James Ball; Jane Clemetson; Keme Nzerem; Kjersti Løken Stavrum; Randi Øgrey; Salim Amin; Thomas Spence and Zahera Harb.


The Board is responsible for the operations of the EJN. It maintains the EJN in line with the aims, objectives and activities of the organisation as set out in these Foundation Documents and ensures the EJN remains a going concern and in good financial standing.

The Chair of the Board is nominated from among the Board members of the EJN.


Members of the Board serve a term of three years which is renewable but for a maximum of three terms.


Members of the Board do not receive remuneration for their work, but shall have their reasonable expenses for travel, accommodation and subsistence paid for.


The work of the secretariat and the day-to-day affairs of the EJN are the responsibility of the Director who is the Chief Executive and who is appointed by the Board. The Director attends board meetings and reports to the Trustees on all aspects of EJN activity.

Articles of Association

Changes to EJN Articles of Association, Annual Meeting 2017

The Board of Trustees of the EJN, meeting on 20th January 2017, agreed to make changes to the Article of Association to give effect to the following principles:

  • That the Board of Trustees is the sovereign authority of the EJN;
  • That the Board of Trustees and shall be responsible for the financial oversight and administration of the EJN and its activities, in line with the EJN’s status as a registered Charity
  • That the Board of Trustees shall appoint the Director who, with the Chair, will have the right to speak on behalf of the EJN
  • That the Board of Trustees shall also appoint new members of staff according to an agreed procedure established with the Director
  • That the Board of Trustees shall nominate and appoint a panel of external advisors to give advice on the work of the EJN and its activities
  • That all decisions by the advisory panel and meetings of network supporters shall be advisory in nature and submitted to the Board of Trustees for endorsement
  • That media, journalism and media support groups, appropriate academic and journalism education institutions and civil society organisations with an interest in media and journalism may become EJN supporters according to rules adopted by the Board of Trustees
  • That the Board of Trustees shall decide upon organisations to be included on the EJN list of recognised supporters
  • That the election to the Board of Trustees shall take place at the Annual Meeting of the EJN Board of Trustees,
  • That the annual meeting shall also appoint an Administrative Committee of three to meet as required between meetings of the Board of Trustees
  • That all members of the Board of Trustees shall be elected for a period of three years with the possibility of election for a second term of three years
  • That the quorum for a meeting of the Board of Trustees shall be three
  • That the Chair of the EJN Board of Trustees shall exercise a casting vote in the event of a tied vote at Board meetings
  • That the Chair and Members of the Board of Trustees shall have the right to speak on behalf of the EJN unless the Board decides otherwise. The process by which board members and others are given permission to speak on behalf requires approval from the Director and or Chair.
  • That the Board of Trustees shall organise, around the annual meeting, a meeting of EJN supporters.

 

Articles of Association of ETHICAL JOURNALISM NETWORK

  1. The company’s name is: ETHICAL JOURNALISM NETWORK (called the ‘charity’).

 

Interpretation

2. In the articles:

‘address’ means a postal address or, for the purposes of electronic communication, a fax number, an e-mail or postal address or a telephone number for receiving text messages in each case registered with the charity;

‘the articles’ means the charity’s articles of association;

‘the charity’ means the company intended to be regulated by the articles;

‘clear days’ in relation to the period of a notice means a period excluding:

  • the day when the notice is given or deemed to be given; and
  • the day for which it is given or on which it is to take effect, ‘the Commission’ means the Charity Commission for England and Wales;

‘Companies Acts’ means the Companies Acts (as defined in section 2 of the Companies Act 2006) insofar as they apply to the charity;

‘the Trustees’ means the Directors of the charity. The Trustees are charity Directors as defined by section 177 of the Charities Act 2011

‘document’ includes, unless otherwise specified, any document sent or supplied in electronic form;

‘electronic form’ has the meaning given in section 1168 of the Companies Act 2006;

‘the memorandum’ means the charity’s memorandum of association;

‘officers’ includes the Trustees and the secretary (if any);

‘the seal’ means the common seal of the charity if it has one;

‘secretary’ means any person appointed to perform the duties of the secretary of the charity;

‘the United Kingdom’ means Great Britain and Northern Ireland; and words importing one gender shall include all genders, and the singular includes the plural and vice versa.

Unless the context otherwise requires words or expressions contained in the articles have the same meaning as in the Companies Acts but excluding any statutory modification not in force when this constitution becomes binding on the charity. Apart from the exception mentioned in the previous paragraph a reference to an Act of Parliament includes any statutory modification or re-enactment of it for the time being in force.ethi