Pubradio guide advises broad application of news ethics

A revised ethics guide for public radio asks journalists to “remain reportorial” instead of spouting opinions when they’re off the air, and it urges that they apply the same standards to call-in shows and websites as they do to newscasts. CPB, which underwrote the project, will release the concise guide, Independence and Integrity II, on its website this week [PDF]. The authors are Alan G. Stavitsky, associate dean of the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication, who wrote the original pubradio ethics guide in 1995, and NPR ombudsman Jeffrey Dvorkin. Though the pair consulted widely — discussing issues with pubradio and other journalists at the Poynter Institute last spring and then in workshops at three stations — Dvorkin says they didn’t end up with ambivalence about what they wrote. One reason is that the authors avoided hairsplitting in favor of brevity.

PRNDI Statement of Ethics, 2003

This revised statement was adopted in July 2003 by Public Radio News Directors Inc., the association of journalists working in public radio. Public Radio News Directors Inc. is committed to the highest standards of journalistic ethics and excellence. We must stand apart from pressures of politics and commerce as we inform and engage our listeners. We seek truth, and report with fairness and integrity. Independence and integrity are the foundations of our service, which we maintain through these principles:

Journalism is the rigorous pursuit of truth.