Events

Meet us on these upcoming occasions

Media Accountability in Lithuania - Lithuanian Journalism Centre – Conference

📅 13 October, 2022 | ⏰ JTI Workshop at 12:50pm-14:20pm EEST | 📍Vilnius, Lithuania | 🌐 lzc.lt

Teaching journalism students how to work with trustworthy journalistic sources and deal with untrustworthy media environments - European Journalism Training Association - AGM & Conference

📅 13-14 October, 2022 | ⏰ Nurturing freedom of expression through teaching global media literacy at 3:45 PM-4:45 PM UTC+4 on Oct 14 | 📍Tbilissi, Georgia | 🌐 ejta.eu

News

11 October, 2022

At the International Summit for Information and Democracy, that was held on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York on 22 September, the Journalism Trust Initiative (JTI) reached another major milestone when it won the support of 11 of the 47 signatory states of the Partnership for Information and Democracy. 

Launched by Reporters Without Borders (RSF) in 2019, the JTI is a self-regulatory mechanism designed to promote trustworthy journalism in the information ecosystem using transparent and objective standards, and is intended to be supported by democratic institutions.

The foreign ministers of Andorra, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Greece, Iceland, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Slovakia and Slovenia – 11 of the 47 signatory states of the Partnership for Information and Democracy – signed a declaration recognising the difficulties that journalists face in maintaining their professionalism in an environment marked by targeted disinformation and smear campaigns aimed at discrediting their work.

The 11 countries hailed “the work done by the Forum on Information and Democracy in its reports How to end infodemics and A New Deal for Journalism on developing non-binding recommendations for all stakeholders, governments, private-sector digital actors and media.”

And they undertook to “support and encourage the development of self-regulatory practices by actors in the information and communication space, in particular the Journalism Trust Initiative,” and urged other countries to back the JTI.

“This strong commitment by countries that are members of the Partnership on Information and Democracy underlines the JTI’s importance as a market solution and its relevance to the challenges for journalism,” RSF secretary-general Christophe Deloire said. “If JTI certification is taken into account by regulators and when aid is being granted to the media, it should be possible to promote the existence of free, independent, pluralistic and financially sustainable media. Last but not least, this declaration will encourage governments to mobilise such key stakeholders as digital platforms and advertisers.”

The backing from these 11 countries comes at a time of expansion for the JTI. RSF was pleased to announce on 3 October that the Alliance for Audited Media (AAM), a not-for-profit media auditor in the United States, has been accredited by a subsidiary of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) to conduct independent audits to determine media outlets’ compliance with the JTI.

More than 350 media have committed to adopting the JTI’s transparency standards since its creation in 2019.

The JTI is designed to help build a healthier news and information space by providing an international set of journalistic standards for adoption by media outlets. They include certifiable criteria regarding professional editorial procedures and the transparency of media ownership, and are intended for use by media of all types, sizes and geographical locations.

 

Contact:

Bertrand MOSSIAT, bmossiat@rsf.org

Chloé FIODIERE, cfiodiere@rsf.org 

3 October, 2022

ANSI National Accreditation Board (ANAB) accredits Alliance for Audited Media (AAM) to certify in accordance with the Journalism Trust Initiative Certification Programme

TheANSI National Accreditation Board (ANAB), a wholly owned subsidiary of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), has accredited the not-for-profit media auditor Alliance for Audited Media (AAM) to conduct independent audits to determine media outlets' compliance with the Journalism Trust Initiative's (JTI) standard for ethics and trustworthiness in journalism. With the accreditation, AAM becomes the first U.S. certifier of the JTI standard in accordance with ISO/IEC 17065, Conformity assessment—Requirements for bodies certifying products, processes, and services, under JTI's certification programme scheme requirements. AAM's achievement of this accreditation will support greater trustworthiness in an era where it has become increasingly difficult to distinguish information shaped by vested interests from facts produced by independent and impartial news professionals.

AAM provides independent audits across media platforms including web, mobile, and print, and has been accredited to conduct certification audits for the following program scopes:

  • Identity and Transparency, which includes basic requirements on media's identity, editorial mission, public service media, requirements on owners' identity, disclosure of identity of the management team and its location, and disclosure of editorial contact details.
  • Professionalism and Accountability, which includes accountability for journalism principles, accuracy, responsibility for content provided by the general public, responsibility for sources, professionalism for affiliations, and internal accountability.

The Journalism Trust Initiative's certification programme focuses on trustworthy information as an output of transparent and sound editorial processes by assessing ethical journalism as a service—and therefore the object of service certification. The program is intended to help users (e.g., service customers) to differentiate trustworthiness between media outlets (e.g., service providers) to make informed decisions.

ANAB's accreditation program operates in accordance with the International Standard, ISO/IEC 17065,  and the JTI's certification programme, which incorporates the following CEN Workshop agreement: CEN - CWA 17493:2019, Journalism Trust Initiative for journalistic content distributed by media outlets.

"ANAB is committed to supporting trustworthy news through accreditation," said R. Douglas Leonard, ANAB vice president for product, inspection, laboratory, and related activities. "With misinformation on the rise and trust in institutions and the media declining, there is an urgent need to help elevate transparent, reliable, and trustworthy information. The JTI conformity assessment scheme covers requirements related to identity, transparency, accountability, professionalism, independence, and ethics. ANAB's third-party verification of conformity to all of these requirements will raise the accountability and reliability of media professionals and outlet services in their work."

"The accreditation of AAM opens up the market for certification in the United States and is a historic step for the Journalism Trust Initiative," said Christophe Deloire, secretary general of Reporters Without Borders. "The JTI team is available to guide media professionals into the app and RSF will make available grants for news outlets based on their available resources. I would like to thank our donors, especially Craig Newmark Philanthropies, which have supported the development of the JTI over the years."

"We are proud to achieve accreditation from ANAB and to become the first U.S. certifier for the Journalism Trust Initiative," said Tom Drouillard, AAM CEO, president and managing director. "JTI's goal of elevating transparency in journalism aligns with AAM's mission to strengthen trust in media through third-party verification."

11 April, 2022

JTI at the #ijf22 in Perugia

Turning accountability into an asset: implementing Reporters Without Border's Journalism Trust Initiative

Holding others to account is what journalism is all about. But who is holding us to account? And why does it matter? These questions are among those resulting from the phenomenon of disinformation, which adds to a perfect storm our profession is facing. Suddenly it is no longer enough to claim: ’Trust me, I am a journalist!’ Suddenly, transparency becomes key to regain and retain our audience’s trust, to make the inner workings of our craft visible and to turn this into a competitive advantage.

Monika Garbačiauskaitė-Budrienė, LRT‘s Director General and European Broadcasting Union‘s Executive Board member, on some of the reasons why they decided to implement the JTI: “LRT is the largest media group in Lithuania, and should therefore be a standards setter. [The JTI] is also good for LRT as an employer and for journalists to better their work.” She added that “you can now say 'hands off' to political and other forms of pressure, as we can now prove the quality of our work thanks to these standards.”

“The truth also gained ground amidst the trouble we’re facing. So, suddenly we had to be more than just being loud about the truth. We had to show evidence about the truth.” [...] “If that means there are uncomfortable moments throughout the JTI process, that's actually good. We are nothing if people don’t trust us,” said Jon Williams, RTE News’ Managing Director. “With a standard for editorial processes, there are no more reasons for platforms to promote harmful content.”

Pascal Doucet-Bon, France Télévisions’ Deputy Director of news, commented that “many institutions offer complaints mechanisms, but there are so many. The JTI was the first occasion for us to reverse the habit of approaching ethics in journalism only through litigation, via such complaints.” He also shared his experience with the external audit, adding: “Many of our rules are not written anywhere, like geolocation because it is so simple. When the auditor asks you to produce evidence on rules like these, you realise how important they are and the authority of the audit.”

Watch again our discussion to have a first-hand and exclusive look behind the scenes of implementing the JTI in the daily routine of news organisations, why they sign up, what the benefits are, what obstacles occured and if it is worth it. The discussion took place on April 9, 2022 as part of the International Journalism Festival in Perugia, Italy.

28 January, 2022

Case Study RTÉ

RTÉ News has stepped up its commitment to trusted journalism and has become the first Irish media organisation to sign up to the global Journalism Trust Initiative (JTI).

"The Journalism Trust Initiative consists of three-stages; first the media outlet is invited to complete a self-assessment, which involves an internal check of conformity with JTI Standard. Next, the results of this self-assessment may be voluntarily disclosed to the public and published by the media outlet as a Trust Report. The final stage of the process is an external audit involving an independent evaluation by a licensed Certification Body. The media outlet will be certified and awarded a Journalism Trust Initiative Mark following the successful completion of all three stages."

Click here to see how the Irish public broadcaster communicates the JTI on its corporate homepage and here to view its JTI Transparency Report.

Trust in journalism demands not just the truth but real transparency

Jon Williams, the Managing Director of RTÉ News explains in this blog post why the organisation decided to sign up for the JTI in the first place and why it matters:

"Last summer, we announced that RTÉ would become the first Irish news organisation to sign up to the 'Journalism Trust Initiative’- an industry wide initiative to promote trustworthy journalism and reduce disinformation through the development of independently audited standards of journalistic methods and ethics.

Trust isn’t just the product of facts or truth. It also depends on transparency, detailing the ownership, funding and ethos of an organisation."

12 November, 2021

JTI receives support at the Paris Peace Forum

The Journalism Trust Initiative (JTI) was featured on a high-level panel at the Paris Peace Forum. Participants, including the European Commission’s Vice-President Vera Jourova, emphasized the importance of the Initiative to reward reliable journalism and to support a healthier information ecosystem at large. Read the RSF press release here and watch the full event below.

11 August, 2021

ANAB accepting pilot accreditation program applications

The ANSI National Accreditation Board (ANAB), a wholly owned subsidiary of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), has launched a new pilot accreditation program for the Journalism Trust Initiative (JTI) – Certification Program. more

29 July, 2021

Conversation on Trustworthy Journalism as an Antidote to Disinformation

Watch our one-hour webinar, co-produced with ReNEWS, that features colleagues from prominent news organizations around the world, like CBC/Radio-Canada, RTÉ and exit.al, sharing their experiences with JTI's web offer designed to identify and reward trustworthy news sources.

2 July, 2021

False story about decuplets was a low point for journalism: how to fix the damage

It is difficult to imagine a bigger journalistic disaster than the recent decuplets story by Pretoria News, based in South Africa’s capital city. But it may present an opportunity to think anew about what could be done to address journalism’s crisis of trust" – writes Franz Krüger for The Conversation and suggest to consider the JTI as a remedy. more

23 June, 2021

RTÉ NEWS FIRST TO SIGN UP NEW TO GLOBAL JOURNALISM TRUST INITIATIVE

RTÉ has underlined its commitment to trusted journalism with the announcement that it will be the first Irish media organisation to sign up to the global Journalism Trust Initiative (JTI). RTÉ News & Current Affairs are signing up to the JTI pledge and will begin using their online transparency tool, designed to promote trustworthy journalism. more

18 May, 2021

Launched on May 18, the JTI online platform represents new dawn for media integrity, transparency and sustainability

  • Reporters Without Borders (RSF) launches new web offer designed to identify and reward trustworthy news sources;
  • Media outlets can use the online app to check, disclose and promote compliance of their editorial processes with best practices;
  • The initiative represents a radical and innovative step forward in the battle against disinformation.

International non-governmental organisation Reporters Without Borders (RSF) announces today the public launch of its Journalism Trust Initiative (JTI), a game-changing transparency tool designed to promote trustworthy journalism. At the core of the JTI is the self-assessment of media outlets to diagnose, optimize and promote the accuracy of their journalism, with the aim of building a healthier news ecosystem, identifying and rewarding reliable reporting and restoring audiences’ confidence in journalism at large. more

Strengthening Ethical Media Standards in Albania and Serbia

5 May, 2021 | AN EJN PROJECT IN PARTNERSHIP WITH UNESCO

The Ethical Journalism Network (EJN) is supporting the media partners in South East Europe and Turkey to conduct the ethical audits – a useful tool for ensuring sustainability and competitiveness in the digital age, as well as to avoid many issues that can stem from reckless reporting. In 2020 the EJN coached and mentored several media outlets from Albania and Serbia who have shown a strong commitment to ethical standards and procedures. Eight of them finalised the 150-questions-long JTI questionnaire. more

Explaining the global JTI movement, Olaf Steenfadt, the Project Director of the JTI at Reporters Without Borders(RSF), says that ”the road-testing of our JTI questionnaire in this region is an important and encouraging experience. We see already tangible improvements in editorial processes and external transparency of participating media outlets, which is clearly a win-win for everyone involved.” 

In this 'Ethics in the News' Podcast, Olaf explains the importance of JTI and its results so far.

26 April, 2021

Case study: Exit.al and the Journalism Trust Initiative

In early 2020, Exit.al was approached to take part in the Journalism Trust Initiative. It was hot on the heels of the Albania government passing the first draft of a law that would essentially bring all online media under the direct control and supervision of the state. This was due to Prime Minister Edi Rama had belief that the majority of online media is unethical, slanderous, “trash”, and unprofessional.

The idea of conducting the audit seemed to be perfect timing. more

Archive

Events

A Matter of Trust: International Journalism Week - iMEdD – Conference

📅 5-10 October, 2022 | ⏰ JTI Workshop at 3:30 PM-4:00 PM EEST on October 8 | 📍Athens, Greece | 🌐 forum.imedd.org

Building trust in media in South-East Europe and Turkey - Ethical Journalism Network - Regional Conference

📅 26-27 September, 2022 | 📍Istanbul, Turkey | 🌐 ethicaljournalismnetwork.org

Identifying and Rewarding Trustworthy Journalism, Colorado Pilot – Webinar

📅 15 June, 2022 | online | 🔗 more info here

Copenhagen Democracy Summit – Conference

📅 9 June, 2022 | Copenhagen, Denmark | 🔗 more info here

POINT - Political Accountability and New Technologies – Conference

📅 2 June, 2022 | Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina | 🔗 find a recap here

Circom 38th Annual Conference: Creative Regions – Creative Economy

📅 26 May, 2022 | Galway, Ireland | 🔗 more info here

Journalism Fair at Dataharvest – Workshop

📅 21 May, 2022 | Mechelen, Belgium | 🔗 more info here

27 November, 2020

Road to transparent journalism: UNESCO is road-testing JTI in South-Easter Europe

UNESCO and its project partner, the Ethical Journalism Network, is supporting media outlets in South East Europe to perform a self-assessment exercise. It follows the professional standards and principles of the Journalism Trust Initiative (JTI) and can help qualify media outlets to become a part of the media community branded as recognising the standards and benchmarks for editorial quality and management. more

8 July, 2020

European Commission awards grant to support Reporters without borders’ Journalism Trust Initiative in Europe

Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is pleased to announce the signature of a grant agreement with the European Commission to support the implementation of its ‘Journalism Trust Initiative’ (JTI) in Europe. more

14 September, 2019

Brexit divisions and angry social media discourse encourage tribal journalism where blind loyalty takes priority over facts

In an era of 'activist' newspapers, the need for a balanced approach has never been greater. more

5 September, 2019

Reporters Without Borders Announces $1.5M Gift from Craig Newmark Philanthropies to Support Transparency and Ethics in News and Media

Gift from craigslist founder’s foundation to facilitate implementation of Journalism Trust Initiative. more

9 August, 2019

What the heck is the Journalism Trust Initiative? And why should I care?

If you are reading this, you may have heard something about the Journalism Trust Initiative. Maybe you saw it on the agenda of the SPJ Excellence in Journalism conference. It’s hard keeping all these misinformation-fighting efforts straight, and the ground keeps shifting. more

18 July, 2019

It is up to journalists to define ‘trustworthy’ news

The initiatives to stop the spread of disinformation abound, but the phenomenon continues to rise. It not only undermines journalism, but also people’s trust in the media, resulting in the growing problem of news avoidance. What if journalists took matters in their own hands? That’s the goal of the Journalism Trust Initiative. more

2 July, 2019

RSF and partners launch a public consultation on the Journalism Trust Initiative

Reporters Without Borders (RSF) and its partners AFP, EBU and GEN are pleased to announce the launch of a public consultation about their Journalism Trust Initiative (JTI) on July 3rd. JTI aims at defining indicators for trustworthy journalism. Compliance with them is expected to provide tangible benefits for media outlets, big and small, and thus, support them to cater to a healthy information space at large. more

4 February, 2019

More than 100 media outlets and organizations are backing the Journalism Trust Initiative

The Journalism Trust Initiative, proposed and organized by Reporters Without Borders (RSF) and its partners, EBU, AFP and GEN, is entering its decisive phase this week. The second out of four workshops under the European Committee for Standardization’s (CEN) rules will be hosted by UNESCO in its Paris headquarters on Tuesday, 5 February. ​more

28 November, 2018

Russian foreign minister criticizes RSF’s trustworthy journalism work

Reporters Without Borders (RSF) deplores Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov’s criticism of the Journalism Trust Initiative at a time when the defence of trustworthy journalism – meaning journalism that is free, independent and rigorous – is a major challenge for democratic societies and humankind as a whole. ​more

3 April, 2018

RSF and its partners unveil the Journalism Trust Initiative to combat Disinformation

An innovative media self-regulatory initiative designed to combat disinformation online – called the Journalism Trust Initiative (JTI) – was launched today by Reporters Without Borders (RSF), and its partners Agence France Presse (AFP), the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and the Global Editors Network (GEN). more