Poynter Online challenged journalists (and others) to tweet “100 Things a Journalist Should Never Do” and “100 Things a Journalist Should Do.” You can find all of the tweets at #100things. Some of the most popular, according to Julie Moos on Poynter:
- Never say you’re unbiased. You are biased. The best journalists mitigate their biases, they don’t hide them.
- Actually follow rule of “If your mother says she loves you, get a second source.”
- A journalist should never do: Wonder how to rewrite a press release before wondering how to fact-check it.
- A journalist should never do: confuse impartiality with decontexualised he said-she said reporting.
- Journalists should follow the facts where they lead, especially if that’s somewhere unexpected & uncomfortable.
- Journalists should be comfortable with silence during interviews. You’ll hear & learn more if you’re not talking.
- A journalist should do: give voice to those who cannot make themselves heard
And, among my personal favorites:
- #100things journos should do: “Embrace social media, establish a genuine persona, interact and build relationships.”
- #100things a journalist should never do: Fear to ask “stupid” questions. Looking ignorant = ok. Being ignorant = fail.
- Journalists should stop tiptoeing around issues because they’re afraid to make people upset. Start asking tough questions again.
- Don’t make up shit.
- One of the #100Things journalists should never do: read or send back a story to a source before publication!
- #100things a journalist should never do: report on a ‘survey’ done by any company that is selling something
- #100things a journalist shouldn’t do: Let a publicist tell you what questions you can and can’t ask.
- #100things a journalist should never do: Report an untrue ‘fact’ without clarifying that it’s false. Also, murder puppies.