On July 9, the following article appeared on the Reuter's blog:
It's pretty good news for journalists -- aspiring, existing or otherwise -- who are serious about their craft.
The handbook includes
sections on standards and values; a guide to operations; a sports style guide and a section of specialised guidance on such issues as personal investments by journalists, dealing with threats and complaints and reporting information found on the internet.
Why are they doing this? Apparently, for several reasons that are listed within the article:
- Transparency: At a time when trust is an endangered commodity in the financial and media worlds, it’s important that news consumers see the guidelines our journalists follow.
- Service: As we’ve seen over the past decade, the barriers to publishing have dropped so that anyone with an idea and a computer can be a publisher. But it’s also become clear that publishers have a varying standard of truth, fairness and style. Our handbook is a good place for budding journalists to begin.
- Geography: Reuters serves a global audience and the handbook recognises the cultural and political differences that our journalists face in reporting for the world. This is a handbook not just for English-language journalists in the United Kingdom or the United States, but for wherever English is used.
That's good enough for me. ePluribus Media has, since its inception, provided a section called the Citizen Journalism Toolbox; coupled with the Reuters Handbook of Journalism, there are now some pretty hefty weapons in the online arsenal for citizen journalists, bloggers, teachers, hobbyists, students and the public at large.
The game is changing; online interaction and information exchange is constantly evolving, and by finding as well as adhering to a set of standards that help us communicate effectively, the public "power of the people" to share information and stay informed in a world awash in propaganda and spin has just taken another step forward.