Mistakes happen. Misinformation gets reported. When it does, the first priority is always to get it fixed, quickly and properly. When a factual error is discovered, we require for it to be corrected promptly and for a clear acknowledgement of the error to be made. We do not require acknowledgments to be made for spelling errors or updates added to a story that has developed.
- Cite competent authorities and sources as the origin of any information open to question. Have proof available for publication in the event of a denial.
- Admit errors promptly, frankly. Public distrust of the media is profound and troubling. The distrust is fed by inaccuracy, carelessness, indifference to public sentiment, automatic cynicism about those in public life, perceived bias or unfairness and other sins suggesting arrogance.
- BOE Report can help overcome such public attitudes through scrupulous care for facts and unwavering dedication to fairness. We must not be quick to dismiss criticism and complaints, a trait that journalists refuse to accept in others.
- The power of news stories to injure can reach both the ordinary citizen and the corporate giant. BOE Report’s integrity and sensitivity demand that supervisors and staff respond sympathetically and quickly when an error has been made. It doesn’t matter whether the complaint comes from a timid citizen acting alone or from a powerful figure’s battery of lawyers.
- Every story shown to be erroneous and involving a correction must be drawn to the attention of supervisory staff.