Australian Edition

The Epoch Times – Melbourne (VIC), trading as The Epoch Times, has adopted the Australian Press Council's Principles and other Standards of Practice.


1. ACCURACY AND CLARITY

The Epoch Times ensures that factual material in news reports and elsewhere is accurate and not misleading, and is distinguishable from other material such as opinion.

The Epoch Times will provide a correction, retraction or other adequate remedial action if published material is significantly inaccurate or misleading.


2. FAIRNESS AND BALANCE

The Epoch Times ensures that factual material is presented with reasonable fairness and balance and that writers’ expressions of opinion are not based on significantly inaccurate factual material or omission of ke facts.

The Epoch Times ensures that where material may refer adversely to a person, consideration is given for subsequent publication of a reply if that is reasonably necessary to address a possible breach of General Principle 3.


3. PRIVACY AND AVOIDANCE OF HARM

The Epoch Times will avoid intruding on a person’s reasonable expectations of privacy unless doing so is sufficiently in the public interest

The Epoch Times will avoid causing or contributing materially to substantial offence, distress or prejudice, or a substantial risk to health or safety unless doing so is sufficiently in the public interest.


4. INTEGRITY AND TRANSPARENCY

The Epoch Times will avoid publishing material which has been gathered by deceptive or unfair means unless doing so is sufficiently in the public interest.

The Epoch Times will ensure that conflicts of interests are avoided or adequately disclosed and that they do not influence published material.

The Epoch Times also adopts the Australian Press Council’s recent revised Statement of General Principles clarifying:

  • the principle that reasonable steps must be taken to ensure that factual material is accurate and not misleading applies to the material of that kind in all types of article;
  • the principle of reasonable fairness and balance applies to presentation of facts (including presentation of other people’s opinions) but not to writers’ expressions of their own opinion.

ON PRIVACY


PRIVACY PRINCIPLE 1: COLLECTION OF PERSONAL INFORMATION

In seeking personal information, journalists should not unduly intrude on the privacy of individuals and should show respect for the dignity and sensitivity of people encountered in the course of gathering news.

In accordance with Principle 7 of the Council’s Statement of General Principles, media organisations should take reasonable steps to avoid publishing material which has been gathered by deceptive or unfair means, unless doing so is sufficiently in the public interest. Generally, journalists should identify themselves as such. However, journalists and photographers may at times need to operate surreptitiously to expose crime, significantly anti-social conduct, public deception or some other matter in the public interest.

Public figures necessarily sacrifice their right to privacy, where public scrutiny is in the public interest. However, public figures do not forfeit their right to privacy altogether. Intrusion into their right to privacy must be related to their public duties or activities.


PRIVACY PRINCIPLE 2: USE AND DISCLOSURE OF PERSONAL INFORMATION

Personal information gathered by journalists and photographers should only be used for the purpose for which it was intended. A person who supplies personal information should have a reasonable expectation that it will be used for the purpose for which it was collected.

Some personal information, such as addresses or other identifying details, may enable others to intrude on the privacy and safety of individuals who are the subject of news coverage, and their families. To the extent lawful and practicable, a media organisation should only disclose sufficient personal information to identify the persons being reported in the news, so that these risks can be reasonably avoided.


PRIVACY PRINCIPLE 3: QUALITY OF PERSONAL INFORMATION

A media organisation should take reasonable steps to ensure that the personal information it collects is accurate, complete and up-to-date.


PRIVACY PRINCIPLE 4: SECURITY OF PERSONAL INFORMATION

A media organisation should take reasonable steps to ensure that the personal information it holds is protected from misuse, loss, or unauthorised access.


PRIVACY PRINCIPLE 5: ANONYMITY OF SOURCES

All persons who provide information to media organisations are entitled to seek anonymity. The identity of confidential sources should not be revealed, and where it is lawful and practicable, a media organisation should ensure that any personal information derived from such sources that it holds does not identify the source.


PRIVACY PRINCIPLE 6: CORRECTION, FAIRNESS AND BALANCE

In accordance with Principle 3 of the Council’s Statement of General Principles, media organisations should take reasonable steps to ensure that factual material is presented with reasonable fairness and balance, and that writers’ expressions of opinion are not based on significantly inaccurate factual material or omission of key facts. In accordance with Principle 4 of the Council’s Statement of General Principles, media organisations should take reasonable steps to ensure that where material refers adversely to a person, a fair opportunity is given for subsequent publication of a reply if that is reasonably necessary to address a possible breach of General Principle 3. A media organisation should take reasonable steps to provide a correction or other adequate remedial action for publishing any personal information that is significantly inaccurate or misleading, in accordance with Principle 2 of the Council’s Statement of General Principles. The media organisation should also take steps to correct any of its records containing that personal information, so as to avoid a harmful inaccuracy being repeated.


PRIVACY PRINCIPLE 7: SENSITIVE PERSONAL INFORMATION

In accordance with Principle 6 of the Council’s Statement of General Principles, media organisations should take reasonable steps to avoid causing or contributing materially to substantial offence, distress or prejudice, or a substantial risk to health or safety, unless doing so is sufficiently in the public interest.

Members of the public caught up in newsworthy events should not be exploited. A victim or bereaved person has the right to refuse or terminate an interview or photographic session at any time.

Unless otherwise restricted by law or court order, open court hearings are matters of public record and can be reported by the press. Such reports need to be fair and balanced. They should not identify relatives or friends of people accused or convicted of crime unless the reference to them is necessary for the full, fair and accurate reporting of the crime or subsequent legal proceedings.

EDITORIAL GUIDELINES

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