Everyone has bias. News outlets are no different, but we have an obligation to transparency. We aim to be rigorous about seeking the truth without intentional deception or duplicity. This may make people uncomfortable, but anything less than it has no place in our publication.
This page is designed to disclose to our readers the overarching bias of our organization, and to serve as a guide for our editors and writers, outlining how they should pursue stories. It is by no means exhaustive, and individual editors and writers will have their own personal biases that they will be expected to disclose as appropriate.
- Free speech comes first
- Democratic societies and organizations succeed through inclusion
- Disagreement is a necessary consequence of democracy
- Democracy demands an informed, engaged citizenry
- The press exists to foster this process of informing dissent and engagement
- The press must remain independent from control by any specific interests
- Governments, corporations, NGOs, non-profits, and religious organizations must be held accountable for their actions
- Everyone must be held accountable for their actions regardless of personal, political or corporate affiliations
- Scientific research trumps anecdotal evidence
- Claims must be evaluated on their own ground; claims to authority grant no additional weight
- There are no saints
- No unverifiable conspiracy theories. Extraordinary claims must be backed up by extraordinary evidence.
- No “click bait” titles or content. We aim to inform, not to trick people into reading.
- No “outrage porn.” Sure, some of what’s happening in the world is bound to piss you off, but anger is only the first step.
- Disrupt the echo chamber. We’re not here to reinforce, we’re here to challenge — interrogation is only good when it’s our ideas that are in the chair. Our rebellion is against complacency.
- No gossip or irrelevant content. All stories should in the end relate to our core issues.
- Giving a platform to a diversity of voices. We will strive to provide a medium for voices that are often suppressed and marginalized.
We strive to follow the guidelines laid out in the Society of Professional Journalists’ Code of Ethics (PDF)
The SPJ Code of Ethics is a statement of abiding principles supported by additional explanations and position papers that address changing journalistic practices. It is not a set of rules, rather a guide that encourages all who engage in journalism to take responsibility for the information they provide, regardless of medium. The code should be read as a whole; individual principles should not be taken out of context. It is not, nor can it be under the First Amendment, legally enforceable.