Members of the Local & Independent News Association (LINA) are expected to adopt the editorial standards of LINA, and/or to have their own editorial standards that are consistent with and incorporate all of the editorial standards of LINA.
The LINA editorial standards are:
1. Independence At all times, editorial content will not be influenced by any financial contributions or other considerations from outside entities.
Whenever advertising or other sponsored content is published, that content will be clearly labelled to distinguish it from the member’s own independent editorial content.
2. Accuracy Members aim to ensure that all editorial content is accurate and is presented in context.
3. Fairness Members are committed to the following hallmarks of fairness:
- Providing a reasonable opportunity to respond where allegations or criticisms are made
- Attributing information to its source wherever possible
- Not plagiarising or misrepresenting the work of others
- Informing those we approach or contact that we are journalists
4. Diversity Members aim to be relevant to the community they serve, and to include an appropriately wide diversity of voices, views and issues.
5. Harm and Offence While some content may offend, disturb or annoy, members aim to avoid unnecessary, excessive or gratuitous harm and offence to the extent compatible with their role as a source of public interest news.
In addition, they are committed to ensuring that any content which intrudes into the private lives of individuals is appropriate and proportionate when balanced with the public interest in the disclosure of information and freedom of expression.
7. Moderation of comments
The publication encourages contributions and comments on stories. However, those comments should contribute to a civil conversation and they should not be abusive, contain personal attacks, be inflammatory, racist or profane. The publication reserves the right to make the decisions about which comments violate these ground rules and the broader editorial guidelines of LINA, and will moderate comments at its discretion.
LINA members may accept advertising or sponsored content in a number of forms, including through paid business listings and display advertisements.
Where such advertising is accepted, it will be clearly labelled to distinguish it from editorial content.
9. Accountability and Corrections
Members make all reasonable efforts to abide by LINA’s editorial standards, and invite any community members who feel the standards have been breached to complain in writing.
Material complaints will be taken seriously, and any breaches of these standards will be acknowledged and corrections made.