FreightWaves recognizes that its clients and other industry stakeholders expect it to meet the highest standards of journalism. This code provides FreightWaves editorial staff with guidelines that are designed to protect the independence, integrity, credibility, honesty, and reliability of the company and its work. All new editorial staff will be given this code and will be required to confirm that they have read, understood and accepted it. All editorial staff will be trained periodically to ensure implementation and understanding of this code, along with training on other relevant FreightWaves editorial manuals, guidelines, procedures, and policies.
- FreightWaves journalists must take responsibility for the accuracy of their work and verify information before releasing it.
- FreightWaves journalists will not knowingly or recklessly disseminate false or misleading information.
- FreightWaves will publish corrections of false or misleading information that it has published.
- FreightWaves journalists will diligently seek to contact individuals and companies that are the subject of stories to give them the chance to comment.
- Journalists have a moral obligation to protect confidential sources of information.
- FreightWaves journalists will not use confidential information to their personal advantage.
- FreightWaves journalists will not pass confidential sources of information to others.
- FreightWaves aims to strike a balance between the open provision of information and protecting the confidentiality of sources.
- FreightWaves journalists will maintain a sense of fairness, balance, and impartiality in their reporting and will not favor one individual or party over another.
- FreightWaves journalists will constantly strive to maintain and expand contacts with as many sources as possible.
- FreightWaves journalists will inform editorial managers immediately of any attempts by sources to manipulate, intimidate, bribe or bully them or their colleagues.
Conflicts of Interest
- FreightWaves journalists are required to declare in writing when they join the company (and at least once a year after that) direct shareholdings or other ownership interests.
- Individual FreightWaves journalists are not allowed to trade or provide information to a third party for trading in any commodity or related security for which FreightWaves produces price assessments, reports or other market intelligence.
- FreightWaves journalists are not allowed to accept gifts of a value greater than $100 from sources, clients or vendors.
- FreightWaves journalists are not allowed to offer gifts without the express prior approval of the editorial manager.
- FreightWaves journalists may not engage in freelance journalism for other publications, whether for pay or not, without first seeking written permission from the appropriate member of the editorial manager.
- FreightWaves journalists should avoid any personal interests that might conflict with the interests of FreightWaves. Any potential conflict of interest must be immediately disclosed to the editorial manager. Failure to disclose conflicts of interest could result in termination of employment.
- Commentary, marketing and sponsored content must be clearly labeled as such.
- Unavoidable conflicts of interest must be disclosed in each article.
- FreightWaves bans plagiarism.
- Plagiarism could be considered as gross misconduct and is taken seriously by management.
Attribution and Sourcing
- Providing information is FreightWaves’ priority, and sourcing every line of a story is not necessary.
- FreightWaves journalists must make a conscious effort to consider sources’ motivations and reliability.
- FreightWaves sees context as imperative when considering attribution. FreightWaves wants to eliminate unnecessary attribution, but the source should be clear to the reader. FreightWaves does not need to source the lead if the information comes from the principal party to the news and the context makes this clear.
- When FreightWaves quotes an individual or report, attribution is necessary. The very nature of highlighting the specific words used to convey a thought or information requires attribution.
- In all cases, FreightWaves journalists must have good sources in their notes.
- FreightWaves has procedures in place to evaluate the status, credibility, and legitimacy of sources.