Ukraine – Code of Ethics of the Ukrainian Journalist (2002)

Code of Ethics of the Ukrainian Journalist, adopted at the “Journalistic Ethics in Ukraine: Elections of 2002 and Future” Conference, 14 April 2002.

1. Freedom of speech and expression is inseparable part of journalistic work.

2. A journalist has to respect people’s private life.

3. Coverage of court procedures has to be impartial. A journalist cannot call a person criminal before an appropriate court verdict has been reached.

4. A journalist doesn’t reveal his/her sources of information except in cases when Ukrainian legislation requires it.

5. A journalist’s first duty is to respect the public’s right to full and objective information on facts and events.

6. Information and analytical materials have to be clearly separated from advertising.

7. Editorial correction of the material including pictures, texts, headings, video and script accordance, etc. cannot distort the content of the material.

8. Facts, thoughts and assumptions have to be clearly separated one from another.

9. Opponents’ points of view, including those who became an object of a journalist’s criticism, have to be presented in a balanced way. Independent experts’ evaluations have to be presented the same way.

10. Sociological research cannot be quoted in a way that distorts the content. Opinion polls cannot be fabricated by journalists for a preconceived purpose.

11. A journalist has to do everything possible to correct any published information if it is proved to be untrue.

12. A journalist cannot use illegal methods of gathering information. While gathering information, a journalist works under Ukrainian law and can use all legal procedures, including court procedures against those who prevent him/her from gathering information.

13. Plagiarism is incompatible with the journalistic profession.

14. No one can be discriminated because of gender, language, race, religion or ethnic, regional, social origin or because of political preferences. This information can be pointed out only if it is a necessary part of the story.

15. Nobody can use work discipline to make a journalist write or do something that is against his/her own principles.

16. Illegal receiving of profit or any benefits for any done or undone journalistic material is incompatible with the journalistic profession.

17. A journalist has to be particularly careful while covering children issues. Journalists and editors have well-founded reasons to cover the private life of any under-age person and permission from his/her parents or guardian. It is inadmissible to publish the names of under-age persons (or other features which could lead to recognition) that were connected to crime or violence.

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