Signal Cleveland is a nonprofit newsroom with a mission to provide Greater Clevelanders with information they need. We are part of a growing movement of nonprofit local newsrooms across the country.
Code of Ethics
Our code of ethics is based on a template from the Institute for Nonprofit News. We also referred to the codes from leading nonprofit newsrooms when creating ours.
Signal Cleveland retains full authority over editorial content to protect the best journalistic and business interests of our organization. We maintain a firewall between news coverage decisions and sources of all revenue. Acceptance of financial support does not constitute implied or actual endorsement of donors or their products, services or opinions.
We accept gifts, grants and sponsorships from individuals and organizations for the general support of our activities, but our news judgments are made independently and not on the basis of donor support.
Our organization may consider donations to support the coverage of particular topics, but our organization maintains editorial control of the coverage. We will cede no right of review or influence of editorial content.
Our organization will make public all donors, including those who give a total of $5,000 or more per year. We will accept anonymous donations for general support only if it is clear that sufficient safeguards have been put into place that the expenditure of that donation is made independently by our organization and in compliance with the Institute for Nonprofit News Membership Standards.
We follow the Code of Ethics from the Society of Professional Journalists, including its statement on anonymous sources: Consider sources’ motives before promising anonymity. Reserve anonymity for sources who may face danger, retribution or other harm, and have information that cannot be obtained elsewhere. Explain why anonymity was granted.
Staff members are expected to use sound judgment to avoid actual or perceived conflicts between their personal interests and their work with Signal Cleveland. As engaged members of our city, staff may be involved in creative and civic activities or employment outside of the newsroom. Staff members are asked to sign a Conflict of Interest statement upon hire and to update it annually or as situations change so actual or potential conflicts of interest are documented in writing.
Debra Adams Simmons, Board Member
Vice President, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion for National Geographic Media