Journalists educate the public about events and issues and how they affect their lives. They spend much of their time interviewing expert sources, searching public records and other sources for information, and sometimes visiting the scene where a crime or other newsworthy occurrence took place. After they've thoroughly researched the subject, they use what they uncovered to write an article or create a piece for radio, television or the internet.
The core principles of ethical journalism set out below provide an excellent base for everyone who aspires to launch themselves into the public information sphere to show responsibility in how they use information. There are hundreds of codes of conduct, charters and statements made by media and professional groups outlining the principles, values and obligations of the craft of journalism.
Respecting society's right to objective information, journalists must present truthful and accurate reports which include the whole spectrum of opinions on certain issues. The news should be based on facts and information which can be verified for integrity.
Journalists should present the facts and preserve their true meaning, demonstrate all major links and not allow any form of distortion of information.
A journalist should differentiate between publicly important information and information that stirs public interest.
Mass media should correct mistakes quickly and comprehensively. Corrections of significant mistakes should be published without delay in a publicly visible place.
The professional status of the journalist is not compatible with occupying a position in state bodies. Their presence in the headquarters of political parties and other such organisations is also incompatible with the professional stature.