Chicago Headline Club resolution addresses prior review

18 Feb

The Chicago Headline Club, the Chicago chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, has adopted the following resolution regarding what is in essence prior review.

The action stems from a New York Times report about members of the Obama campaign staff wanting to review reporters notes and quotes before their stories were submitted.

In light of alarming reports that journalists from some of America’s most established news organizations have allowed their sources and/or sources’ representatives to edit and/or approve quotes before publication or broadcast (see, the Chicago Headline Club hereby adopts the following:

WHEREAS the practice of allowing political candidates and/or their representatives to review and/or edit quotes prior to the publication or broadcast of a report undermines the very foundation of an independent press that our predecessors so valiantly fought to obtain;

WHEREAS this practice strikes at the heart of the public’s trust in a free and unfettered press;

WHEREAS this practice in inimical to the protections and safeguards of a free society;

BE IT RESOLVED that the Board of Directors of the Chicago Headline Club of the Society of Professional Journalists hereby declares that this practice must immediately cease and its future practitioners be held accountable for violating the most fundamental of journalistic standards and ethical conduct.

–CHC Board of Directors


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