Media Charter of Honor

Introduction:

Due to the significant role the media plays in shaping public opinion, in monitoring and accountability, in conveying the truth to the public professionally and objectively which the Syrian media have lacked for decades and in order to contribute to control media developments in Syria following the outbreak of the uprising in March 2011 and the outbreak of media institutions, the need for  media charter of honor has become necessary for signatories to commit to and to govern the function of the newly-founded media institutions.

Accordingly, the following undersigned: a group of independent Syrian media institutions which have adopted a series of principles through a charter that contributes to creating a state of balance and stability for the benefit, growth and advancement of Syrian society. Of all concerned, to respect and abide by what is stated therein, and to call it Charter of Honor.

Article 1: Definition of Media
Media is a profession and a message that cares about the truth and its dissemination and its communication to the public without prejudice, freely, impartiality and sincerity.


Article 2: Definition of the Media Professional

According to the charter, media professional is the person who practices the profession of the media, through the manufacture and dissemination of media content in all its forms and types whether individual or institution.


Article 3: Charter Inclusion

This Charter includes all media professionals, individuals, groups, companies, associations and clubs, and those who work in the preparation of information materials, written, video and audio, or any other form of expression by all means of publication.


Article 4: Charter Sources and Principles

A- The charter is based on general principles of ethics enshrined in international charters, declarations and conventions. These principles are not limited to accuracy, truthfulness, credibility of information, objectivity and integrity. The principles of the charter also include the independence of media coverage, respect for truth and freedom of expression, , and to give the different groups in the society the means  to express in the publishing method and respond and correct information if they were mentioned in news, research or image, or were abused by the content published.

B- Media institutions and professionals included in this charter shall not be subject to political authority and political organizations and they should take into consideration the privacy of the audience be them individuals and groups and respect their right to information and non-discrimination among groups of the public on grounds of religion, sect, race, language or sex; as well as respect freedom of thought, belief and expression, and promote participation and communication between the media establishment and the public.

C -  Media professional should perform his/her work in an ethical and professional manner and should be faithful to honesty and integrity, and to distinguish in the publication of information material between the news and personal ideas in order to prevent confusion and disclosure in the area of ​​the recipient and respect him/her to form their own personal convictions.

 

Article 5: The Ethical Obligations for Media Professionals

 A-  Media professional shall, during their work, respect the fundamental principles laid down in the international and Arab declarations and in particular those relating to the preservation of human dignity, the protection of the rights of persons with special needs, to be careful during coverage, and not to exploit them during the media work, and the need to expand in mentioning the caveats concerning children during media coverage, specifically those provided for in the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

B- Media Professionals should refrain from publishing any information material that would encourage crime or violence, hate speech, sectarian, ethnic or regional incitement, family disintegration, violence against women, trafficking in human beings, and seek justice and civil and international peace.

C-The media professional shall, in the exercise of his/her work, commit to:

 -To investigate the truth and seek it and to convey the facts truthfully and honestly without disregarding or truncating information.


- Professional integrity and work in the interest of the public and to give it priority to the interest of his/her media organization or his/her personal interest.


- Respect privacy and do not harm individuals or institutions due to press publication and respect for their wishes or the desire of their parents not to disclose their names or addresses for moral or security reasons.


- Make no prejudgments, and ensure accuracy and clarity in terms and expressions used in the press coverage.


- Not to exploit the social, humanitarian and economic situation in the coverage areas.


- Mention the sources and identifying them accurately, and the reasons for the reservation should be mentioned when it is necessary to conceal them, protect sources and witnesses, and not disclose their personalities except for legal necessity.


- Refrain from publishing photographs and videos that harm the sanctity and dignity of the victims (dead or wounded).


-  Respect for copyright and references to sources when quoting.


- Inform the public about cases in which the authorities hide part of the information when the concealment of this information results in harm to the public interest.


- Distinguish between press material and advertisement, publicity, and sponsored material, and refrain from promoting a product, a policy, or a group by presenting the material as press material or news.
- Avoid defamation and slander against individuals, groups, establishments, and/or bodies.



Article 6: Solidarity of signatories

The signatories to this charter will demonstrate solidarity with any media professional who faces any violation or threat, particularly if this violation or threat comes because of commitment to the provisions of this charter.

 

Article 7: Advocacy

This Charter calls upon all Syrian media professionals to sign and abide by it.

 

Article 8: Commitment to the Charter

The signatories to this charter abide by its provisions. An independent committee will follow up this commitment.

For more : http://almethaq-sy.org/