Journalistic writing must be guided by strong ethics along with accuracy, balance, and concision.
I give this simple handout to students and newspaper staff on one of the first days of class. We also have it posted in our publications room.
In a clear, simple way it explains the key principles of journalism and journalistic ethics. I think it's essential to not bog students down with minutiae in the beginning, but it is incredibly important to begin discussion and awareness of what a journalist should and should not do from day one.
I give students a more detailed code of ethics (see my Journalism Ethics Resources in my store) later in the course, but we refer back to this simple guide many times. I ask students to keep it at the front of their binder.
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