Revised ACM Code of Ethics
October 4, 2015
Members of affiliated organisations of the ACM and individual members commit to the belief that ethical journalism provides a foundation for ensuring the free exchange of accurate, fair and thorough information.
We subscribe to the principles that require journalists to seek truth and report it, minimise harm, act independently and be accountable and transparent.
Ethical journalism should be accurate and fair and journalists should be honest and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting information. Journalists should, at all times, fight the tendency towards subjectivity, and be professionally fair in all aspects of their work.
1. Verify information before releasing it and use original sources whenever possible;
2. Refrain from engaging in self-censorship to suppress information that the public has the right to know;
3. Identify sources clearly but, when anonymous sources are cited, explain why anonymity is necessary in that instance and maintain the integrity of secret sources of information;
4. Resist and refuse bribery of any kind;
5. Diligently seek subjects of news coverage to allow them to respond to criticism or allegations of wrongdoing;
6. Seek to ensure that the public’s business is conducted in the open, and that public records are open to all;
7. Avoid stereotyping;
8. Never deliberately distort facts or context, including visual information;
9. Balance the public’s right to know against the need to minimise harm;
10. Consider those who may be affected by news coverage, particularly when children, victims of sex crimes and other vulnerable groups are involved;
11. Avoid pandering to lurid curiosity and salacious detail;
12. Resist favoured treatment of organisations or individuals including politicians, business interests or advocacy groups to influence coverage;
13. Respond quickly to questions about accuracy, clarity and fairness and acknowledge mistakes and correct them promptly and appropriately;
14. Be transparent in their work and expect to be held to the same standard as others, and oppose unethical conduct within the fraternity;
15. Not plagiarise.