The DePaulia Code of Ethics
The primary function of The DePaulia is to inform the DePaul University community of the important, timely and relevant information and views through a student produced weekly newspaper and website, thereby reflecting and encouraging a free flow of information within the university community and among its various internal and external constituencies. The DePaulia staff is committed to providing the paper’s readers with information they need to know, while trusting the readership to reach its own conclusions on the basis of that information.
The editorial staff of The DePaulia is granted the authority to publish by the College of Communication, but acts independent from the university. Everything that is of interest to DePaul students merits scrutiny in the pages of The DePaulia. It is the responsibility of The DePaulia to cover all pertinent stories with such thoroughness that no member of the university community can accurately claim that its voice has not been given its appropriate place within the pages of the newspaper.
Commitment to Truth
The breadth and depth of The DePaulia’s coverage will be characterized by balance, fairness and impartiality. Competing voices and opinions will be earnestly sought and faithfully represented. Commentaries will be placed in proper context so that their meanings are undiluted. The DePaulia’s fundamental commitment to truth means it must report without fear of favor.
With The DePaulia’s fundamental commitment to the free flow of information comes a social responsibility. It is neither necessary nor appropriate that every opinion appear in the newspaper. This stands true for every section of the newspaper, from news to the opinions pages. The editorial staff of The DePaulia reserves the right to refuse publication of information and opinion that it feels does not serce the public interest. This decision holds as an important value the public’s right to know, but recognizes the newspaper is under no obligation to print material that carelessly or intentionally holds an individual or group to ridicule or scorn, is profane, indecent or encourages unlawful behavior.
The right to publish is a fundamental right becase it implies the right to read, the right to consider different opinions and the right to exercise one’s obligation as a thinking member of the DePaul community. This therefore makes The DePaulia the representative of the university’s student population, in all its complexity and diversity. The censoring of The DePaulia, therefore, through prior censorship of the willful destruction of the newspaper post-publication, is a fundamental violation of a public trust that ought not be tolerated by any member of the university community under any circumstances.
The DePaulia will not publish obscene material. This includes material that – applying the contemporary standards – taken as a whole, appears to be a prurient interest in sex, or material that depcits in a patently offensive manner sexual conduct, or if the material lacks serious literary, artistic, political social or scientific value.
In its editorial operation, The DePaulia asserts its independence from all obligations except that of faithfulness to its social responsibility and the public interest. It promotes no private interest over the general welfare of its readers. It will never knowingly depart from honest journalism, thus holding no value higher than the search for the truth.
The DePaulia will at all times show respect for the dignity, privacy laws and well-being of people encountered in the gathering and presenting of news. The newspaper will not communicate unofficial charges affecting reputation or moral character without giving the accused a right to reply. It will make a prompt and complete correction of this and any other errors. The DePaulia will be held accountable to its readers for what it reports and encourages open communication with its readers regarding the quality of the newspaper.
Since public trust is foundation to the role of a newspaper, The DePaulia pledges to rigorously source its news pages. Readers have the right to know where their information is coming from. Editorials, features and sports will be held to the same standard of fairness. Partisanship that attempts to persuade is encouraged, but not if it knowingly departs from facts, or conscientiously disregards facts in evidence.
The DePaulia will not accept for publication any advertisement that violates any of the standards set forth in The DePaulia Code of Ethics