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Photojournalism Code of Ethics

April 17, 2014 — Published by

Photographs must provide an accurate and comprehensive representation of their subjects. Photographers and editors will not stage photographs or digitally manipulate them in a way that alters their meaning.

Photographers must avoid scenes staged by them, the subjects, or another party. Artistic direction is acceptable for portraits as long as the portrait is not presented as candid.

Photographers should also treat all subjects with respect. In a situation in which someone needs assistance and no one else is present, photographers have a responsibility to act rather than document.

In all other situations, photographers must strive not to influence events they are photographing.

Photographers should also follow national norms and laws regarding subject consent. In the United States, this means that the subject’s permission is required in private, but not public, places.

Photographers may make minor changes to their photographs, as long as they do not alter the meaning of the photograph.

Acceptable corrections may include dodging and burning, global color correction, contrast control and cropping. Any other changes are unacceptable for news stories and should be used rarely, if ever, in other sections.

If a photograph is edited beyond the minor changes mentioned earlier, there must be a valid reason discussed with the editor-in-chief, and the photograph must be accompanied by a clear, large disclaimer.

Section editors should present photographs in a context that accurately reflects the subject and the information.

If a photograph meets ethical guidelines but presents an issue of taste, the decision of whether to publish the photograph should be based on whether the concerned party needs to see the photograph to receive an accurate portrayal of the subject.

If another photograph could present the same information offending readers’ taste, then this alternative photograph should be used.

If a photograph presents clear issues of ethics or taste, the following individuals should meet before publication to weigh the value of the information against the potential harm to subjects or audience: editor-in-chief, managing editor, photography editor, section editor and photographer.

(via Pioneer Log)
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Posted by on April 17, 2014. Filed under Talk. A word on our own regarding comments: Please practice mutual respect and nice grammar is never wrong. And why not support THEME. We love what we do and hope you enjoy our takes on photography. If you get new gear — or anything else for that matter —, please do so by clicking our AMAZON affiliate link — or shop via our trusted partners. Doesn't cost a cent more. Appreciate!
  • http://amalric2014.blogspot.it/ amalric

    I fully subscribe, hoping that it becomes a movement larger than journalism, involving art and ethical photography in general.

    A critic already dubbed it neo-realism, but it also includes Slow Photography, and in my parlance ‘Dirty’ Photography, Commercial photography of course wiil keep doing its abject beautification, until people get tired of it :)

  • MarcoSartoriPhoto

    Photojournalism has changed, it’s not dead. Now I see newspaper “hiring” instagrammers for free and using their photos, often taken just to have that “moment of glory”. And photo journalists, who usually know and follow the above mentioned ruled, are left at home.