Our Code Of Conduct

The code of conduct has set out the main principles of UK and Irish journalism since 1936. The code is part of the rules of the union.

The code of conduct has set out the main principles of UK and Irish journalism since 1936. The code is part of the rules of the union.

The code’s purpose is to advise members, and other journalists, on how to carry out their work ethically. It has been used by journalists over the decades to challenge unethical instructions and produce content that is “honestly conveyed, accurate and fair”.

The code has been democratically agreed upon by NUJ members. The current code was updated in 2011 and forms part of the union rules as Appendix A.

Here at Townwatch UK, we have chosen to adopt the NUJ (National Union Of Journalists) code of conduct for journalism, this is because we are a nonprofit research-based project that was built purely for the public interest, we publish our findings if they are in the public interest.

All our researchers are trained to respect the NUJ code of conduct at Townwatch UK because it is all based on ethics. See below for the full list and feel free to message us and complain if you believe one of our members has breached any, thank you.

NUJ code of conduct

A journalist:

  1. At all times upholds and defends the principle of media freedom, the right of freedom of expression, and the right of the public to be informed.
  2. Strives to ensure that information disseminated is honestly conveyed, accurate, and fair.
  3. Does her/his utmost to correct harmful inaccuracies.
  4. Differentiates between fact and opinion.
  5. Obtains material by honest, straightforward, and open means, with the exception of investigations that are both overwhelmingly in the public interest and which involve evidence that cannot be obtained by straightforward means.
  6. Does nothing to intrude into anybody’s private life, grief, or distress unless justified by overriding consideration of the public interest.
  7. Protects the identity of sources who supply information in confidence and material gathered in the course of her/his work.
  8. Resists threats or any other inducements to influence, distort or suppress information and takes no unfair personal advantage of information gained in the course of her/his duties before the information is public knowledge.
  9. Produces no material likely to lead to hatred or discrimination on the grounds of a person’s age, gender, race, colour, creed, legal status, disability, marital status, or sexual orientation.
  10. Does not by way of statement, voice or appearance endorse by advertisement any commercial product or service save for the promotion of her/his own work or of the medium by which she/he is employed.
  11. A journalist shall normally seek the consent of an appropriate adult when interviewing or photographing a child for a story about her/his welfare.
  12. Avoids plagiarism.

The NUJ believes a journalist has the right to refuse an assignment or be identified as the author of an editorial that would break the letter or spirit of the NUJ code of conduct.

The NUJ will support journalists who act according to the code.

NUJ code of conduct was updated in 2011.