Markkula Center for Applied Ethics

Collaborator Materials

Core Trust Indicators and Editorial Attributes
Welcome!
 
At the Trust Project we fight misinformation, pop filter bubbles and elevate trustworthy, ethically produced news so both the public and news distribution platforms can find it easily. Our transparency standards help newsrooms show how they are fulfilling journalism’s basic pledge: to serve society with a truthful, intelligent and comprehensive account of events and ideas.
 
The chart below shows our eight core Trust Indicators and their attributes, which offer transparency across multiple dimensions. Our indicators were identified from user research and defined by our working groups of top editors from around the world. Follow the links (in red) to find editorial guidance on each.

 

Legend 
Blue = Trust Project MVP Y = Required; R = Recommended; N= Not in MVP
Yellow = Recommended

Site = Site level; PoW= Piece of Work level

  A# = Attribute numbers on related documents (see links)

 

Best Practices Indicator

Editorial guidelines, definitions  

Indicated/Signalled from:

Site/PoW/ Both

A#

Attributes
(Click to go to definition)

 

UX (user-facing)

M-R Signal

Site

1

Ethics Policy

Y

Y

Site

2

Diverse Voices Statement 

Y

Y

Site

2a

Diverse Staffing Report

Y

Y

Site

3

Corrections Policy

Y

Y

PoW

3a

Show Corrections

Y

Y

PoW

3b

Corrected Article

Y

Y

Site

4

Ownership Structure, Funding and Grants

Y

Y

Site

4a

Founding Date

Y

Y

Site

5

Masthead (list of top editors)

Y

Y

Site

6

Mission/Coverage Priorities

Y

Y

Site

7

Verification/Fact-checking Standards

Y

Y

Site

8

Unnamed Sources Policy

Y

Y

Site

9

Actionable Feedback

Y

Y

Site

9a

Actionable Feedback Contact Info

Y

Y

Site

10

Newsroom Contact Info

Y

Y

PoW

11

Link to Best Practices Policies

Y

Y

PoW

12

BP Policies Especially Relevant to the Work

Y

N

Site

13

Reference to participation in Trust Project

Y

N

 Author/Reporter Expertise Information Indicator

Editorial guidelines, definitions   

Indicator

 

Attributes

(Click to go to definition)

 

UX

M-R Signal

Site

1

Name*(byline)

Y

Y

Site

2

Photo*

R

R

Site

3

Location (where based)

Y

Y

Site

4

Languages Spoken

Y

Y

Site

5a

Areas of Expertise |- Topic Expertise*

Y

R

Site

5b

Areas of Expertise |-  Local/Demographic Expertise*

Y

Y

Site

6

Biography

Y

Y

Site

7

Contact Details*

Y

R

Site

8

Persistent ID

Y

Y

Site

9

Affiliation with Publisher/Job Title or Role*

Y

R

Site

11

Archive* (body of work)

Y

Y

PoW only

13

Author/Reporter Page Link

Y

Y

PoW

  *In addition to showing the following attributes on the author page itself, show at least 4 on the article page UX: Name, Photo, Local/Demographic Expertise, Topic Expertise, Contact Details, Job Title or Affiliation with Publisher, or Archive.

 Brand as Byline Exemption

Editorial guidelines, definitions 

Indicator

 

Attributes

UX

M-R Signal

Site

14

No-byline Policy Explanation

Y

Y

Site

15

Senior Editor Bio or Link to Page

Y

R

Site

16

Staff Directory (or a link to one)

Y

R

Site

17

Link to Ethics Policy (if it touches on the  byline question)

R

R

PoW

18

Brand Author/No-Bylines Policy Page Link

Y

Y

 Label Type of Work Indicator

Editorial guidelines, definitions 

Indicator

 

Attributes

(Click to go to definition)

UX

M-R Signal

PoW

 

News

N

Y

PoW

 

News Article (Note: Limited use, see guidelines.)

N

Y

PoW

 

Opinion

Y

Y

PoW

 

Analysis

Y

Y

PoW

 

Advertiser Content

Y

Y

PoW

 

Sponsored

Y

Y

PoW

 

Underwritten/Supported

Y

Y

PoW

 

Behind The Story

R

R

PoW

 

Explainer

R

R

PoW

 

Fact Check

R

R

PoW

 

Help Us Report (request to users)

R

R

PoW

 

Investigative/Enterprise

PoW

 

Obituary

R R

PoW

 

Review

R

R

PoW

 

Satire

R

R

 Citations & References Indicator

Editorial guidelines, definitions

Indicator

 

Attributes

(Click to go to definition)

UX

M-R Signal

PoW

1

Internal Original Documents and Data

Y

Y

PoW

2

External Original Documents and Data; Source Bios

Y

Y

PoW

3

Secondary News Sources

Y

Y

 Methods Indicator

Editorial guidelines, definitions 

Indicator

 

Attributes


(Click to go to definition)

UX

M-R Signal

PoW

1

Dateline/Placeline (when relevant)

Y

Y

PoW

2

Sourcing and Methodology Statement

Y

Y

 The indicators below will be fully specified for MVP Phase 2. Attr #1 in each of these are specified in MVP Phase 1’s Best Practices and Author/Reporter Expertise Information.

Local Reporting Indicator 

Editorial guidelines, definitions

Indicator  

Attributes

(Click to go to definition)

UX M-R Signal
Site/PoW 1 Local Coverage Priorities (BP Attr#6)    
Site/PoW 2 Local Expertise (Author Attr#5a)    
PoW 3 Original Video is Local    
PoW 4 Geo-location(s) of Story N Y

Diverse Voices Indicator

Editorial guidelines, definitions

Indicator  

Attributes

(Click to go to definition)

UX M-R Signal
Site 1 Diverse Voices Statement (BP Attr #2) Y Y
Site 3 Specific Practices     

Actionable Feedback Indicator

Editorial guidelines, definitions

Indicator  

Attributes

(Click to go to definition)

UX M-R Signal
Site 1 Actionable Feedback Statement (BP Attr #9) Y Y
PoW 1a Practices Relevant to Story    
Site 2 Actionable Feedback Program    

 

 

 

Tech Development and UX Working Groups

Americas 

Hearst Television
Independent Journal Review
Institute for Nonprofit News
Mic
New York Times
Washington Post
The Globe and Mail
USA Today Network

Europe 

BBC
dpa
The Economist
La Stampa
La Repubblica
Haymarket Media
Trinity Mirror