Letter from the EIC
The Industry Dive newsroom is committed to becoming the world’s most respected source of business journalism. To achieve this ambition, our journalism and reputation must be rooted in impeccable standards and ethics.
Our Code of Ethics is like the foundation of our house: It sets the standards, values and principles that guide our journalists and publications to earn the trust and respect of the industries we cover.
We developed this code with Thomas Kent, the longtime Standards Editor of the Associated Press. We solicited input from across our newsroom and discussed every issue in depth with our leadership team. We train every journalist in our newsroom on this code when they join our organization and recirculate it regularly. We operate on a daily basis with its guiding principles in mind. We continue to update the code in light of evolving discussions and issues.
Here, we share the most relevant highlights from our Code of Ethics — there is a more robust internal version that provides greater detail, addresses more topics and outlines practical procedures — to help our readers, sources and other external stakeholders understand the standards and policies that we are committed to. Trust and transparency are essential to the best journalism.
Editor-in-Chief, Industry Dive
Industry Dive and its publications are committed to accurate, fair and impartial coverage of the sectors we serve. Readers who come to our publications trust us to provide reliable industry information that they cannot get anywhere else.
Industry Dive journalists report on the most notable developments, challenges, innovations, and disruptions in our markets. We tailor our coverage to the needs of senior executives in the industries and professions we serve, while remaining accessible to other interested readers and the general public. We focus on reporting the news and trends that could significantly affect business in the future, and deliver insight that helps executives make sense of the evolving business landscape.
In order to tell the most comprehensive business stories for our sectors, our newsroom should be representative of a diverse world. Our reporting should be inclusive of diverse opinions and points of view, including perspectives informed by race, gender, personal backgrounds and political beliefs. We do not tolerate hate speech, disinformation or racism in our products.
Our products serve both readers and advertisers. Our publications clearly delineate Industry Dive's news coverage from sponsored content. Our journalism is free of any influence from advertising or business considerations. We do not advocate for specific policies in our editorial coverage.
Our Ethics Code is the foundation of Industry Dive's editorial integrity. It is provided to all Industry Dive journalists, who must confirm they understand and accept its provisions.
In the following sections, we outline the core principles of our Ethics Code and the standards that our newsroom adheres to:
Industry Dive is committed to providing journalism that is accurate, impartial, complete, and of the highest editorial integrity.
We set out to cover stories with an open mind, and report until we find the truth. We present our findings accurately, precisely and transparently, without loaded language. On controversial issues, we present the full range of responsible opinion, not just extremes. We are sensitive to perspectives based on race, gender and personal experiences. When we report negative information or claims about a person or company, we seek their response and give them or a spokesperson reasonable time to provide it. If we cannot obtain such a comment, we report on the attempts we made, and then continue to seek comment after our initial story is published.
Plagiarism will not be tolerated. No information or quotes may be fabricated, taken from another source without attribution, or used in a manner that takes the information out of context. We do not give money or gifts in exchange for news or guarantee coverage. We do not accept money or gifts of value from news sources.
Industry Dive takes very seriously any complaint about the accuracy or fairness of our content. We publish corrections, swiftly and transparently, of any errors of fact, interpretation or omission in our content.
Industry Dive journalists should seek to attribute information to a named source whenever possible. However, anonymous sources are sometimes essential to accurate, competitive reporting. Material based on anonymous sources must always be carefully vetted before it is published.
Granting anonymity is not the same as talking to a source off the record. An off-the-record conversation cannot be published in any way. Anonymity implies an intent to publish the information without divulging the source’s identity, including potentially refusing to divulge it in court proceedings.
Anonymity is granted only in return for important information that is not reasonably obtainable by other means. Sources may request anonymity as a condition for granting us information; in some cases, Industry Dive will grant anonymity to avoid placing a source at risk.
We seek to corroborate anonymous information before publication. In most cases, Industry Dive requires at least one additional independent source of information that supports the initial information before publishing it. In rare cases, we may publish information based on a single source where certain conditions are met.
An anonymous source should be described as fully as possible to help readers understand their reliability and potential biases. The phrasing of this description must be acceptable to both the source and Industry Dive. Publication of information from an anonymous source is approved by the Editor-in-Chief or Deputy Editor, who must know the source’s background and context for providing the information.
Industry Dive journalists are expected to avoid any conflict of interest that could bring the fairness of their reporting into question. Any such conflicts must be disclosed to a manager. Conflicts of interest may affect the assignments a journalist handles, and may need to be disclosed to readers in relevant coverage.
Our journalism is free of any influence from advertising or business considerations. When we report on a company that has a notable business relationship with Industry Dive, this should be disclosed in the story. Decisions to cover Industry Dive or its owners should be based on the value of the story to our readers, not on business considerations or the relationship between Industry Dive and its owners. We should apply the same standards of fairness and rigor to Industry Dive and its owners that we would apply to covering any other company.
In general, Industry Dive journalists should not accept gifts, except those of nominal value – worth $20 or less. Exceptions can be made, with permission from a manager, for items that are directly relevant to our coverage. Gifts sent to a journalist's home or office should be returned to the sender with an explanation of our rules. If returning a gift is impractical, it can be donated to charity, and the sender should be advised that we have done this.
Industry Dive journalists may occasionally accept modest meals and refreshments from sources and while covering events. They should never routinely accept meals or other favors from anyone in their professional capacity as a journalist.
Industry Dive journalists involved in covering newsworthy events may accept free admission, but should not accept free travel. Exceptions may be made, with permission from a manager, to speak at an event, moderate a panel or accept an award. Our journalists cannot guarantee coverage of any event in exchange for admission.
We do not tolerate hate speech, disinformation or racism in our products. Industry Dive journalists may quote obscenities, vulgarities and slurs only if they are direct quotes, and the precise words are essential to the story. Content warnings may be added to stories that quote hate speech and crimes to warn readers of their content.
Industry Dive encourages its journalists to be active as citizens and members of their communities. Everyone has personal or political opinions, but our journalists should ensure these opinions do not carry over to our journalism.
Industry Dive journalists avoid activities that would cause readers to question the impartiality of their reporting. Our journalists should not affiliate with organizations and candidates known for strong positions on the industry their Dive covers; interest groups that intersect directly with their coverage areas; or trade associations, companies, and policymaking in the industry they cover.
Industry Dive protects the privacy of our users. Staff, readers and clients can trust we will safeguard their personal information.
Our journalism should respect personal privacy where warranted, while also being faithful to our mission. Much depends on the expectation of privacy that people have in a given situation. We do not intrude into people's private lives without a news justification. We should grant relative privacy to vulnerable people. When given access to a private area or event, we should respect any rules imposed on us; if we think the rules are excessive, we should decline the invitation. News considerations may sometimes override privacy concerns.
Industry Dive has a publishing responsibility to the public. Readers of our products trust us to provide reliable information they cannot get anywhere else. The quality of our editorial content is what makes Industry Dive a valuable place for advertisers’ messages.
Our company operates with these guiding principles in mind:
Public and media appearances are important to Industry Dive. The role of our journalists in such settings is as specialists in the fields we cover; our comments should focus on sharing expertise, rather than personal opinions or advocacy.
We will accept reimbursement of reasonable expenses necessary for our attendance; we do not accept honorariums for speeches or panel appearances. When moderating panels, we may provide advance notice of the topics we want to discuss; we will not commit to asking specific questions or avoiding certain topics.
An Industry Dive journalist should not appear as speakers or moderators at events designed to promote a particular policy, product, or vendor, nor on panels controlled by companies that the journalist covers. Journalists may appear at events, and accept honorariums, regarding work that is not related to their Industry Dive duties.
Reach out to email@example.com if you wish to discuss any opportunities for Industry Dive staff to speak for a media interview or at an event.
Industry Dive's sources should be well-informed, trustworthy and diverse. We must be satisfied that the information they provide is reliable, and will hold up to scrutiny. We should share with readers any background information about our sources that might suggest they could be biased or have hidden motives.
We always seek to quote sources on the record. Industry executives, government officials, and others know the risks and benefits of dealing with reporters and should be publicly accountable. When we identify ourselves as a reporter, we generally assume that any ensuing conversation is on the record, unless both parties agree otherwise. Industry Dive journalists should not misrepresent themselves.
However, we sometimes interview and interact with people with little understanding of how media works; in such cases, we must balance our normal practice of identifying those we report on with concern about exploiting vulnerable persons. Circumstances may dictate withholding people's names, photographing them in a way that conceals their identity, or identifying them in a less precise way. A manager should be consulted whenever we withhold identification. Our default practice should be to identify people fully.
Interviews can be recorded with permission. At the start of an interview, the ground rules should be made clear. We always want interviews to be on the record, with all statements fully attributable to the interviewee. Sometimes we may agree that parts of the interview may be conducted on another basis, as defined by the Associated Press:
We are bound by such conditions only if we have agreed to them in advance.
When setting up interviews, we may give the source a general idea of what subjects we wish to cover in an interview, but should make clear that we always may ask about something else. We never promise to ask, or not ask, about certain subjects.
Industry Dive journalists must not show sources, public relations representatives or anyone outside of the newsroom quotes or unpublished stories in advance of publication. There are a few, limited exceptions to this policy: We may, at our own initiative, share quotes or broad details of a story, provided the other parties agree to not share the information with anyone outside of the company. We may, at our own initiative, check back on quotations or information from an interview if we think we didn't record them properly; if we're not sure of some technical detail; if we think the interviewee may have misspoken; or if we missed the context of a comment. We have no obligation to delete, or not use, material that a source said on the record. Source involvement in the interview after it has ended amounts to the source editing the story, which we do not allow. Interviewees may call or email us with additional comments after an interview, which we can use at our discretion.
Industry Dive journalists should not edit quotations or use partial quotes in a manner that takes the information out of context. We may paraphrase quotes if this does not change the intended meaning. It is permissible to remove "verbal tics" from quotes; brackets and ellipses may be used to shorten or clarify quotes if they do not distort their meaning. Industry Dive journalists should never use a quote in a manner that takes it out of its essential context.