Current Issues

Learn more about NNC perspectives on current and emerging issues

The following position papers outline our consensus on current issues. We welcome your feedback. Please feel free to get in touch with us here.

Journalistic best practices: Reporting on police and minor crime

  • This discussion paper is the product of several years of discussions between readers and news organizations about the public’s growing concerns surrounding the news value, and the long-term impact, for example, of being named in a news report on what could be considered a ‘minor’ crime.

Journalistic best practices: Addressing racism and systemic racism

  • These tips were collated in consultation with diverse editors, journalists, and academics as guidance to support success in using the best practices. Read the full best practices document here.

Position paper: Branded content – Updated February 21, 2019

  • The National NewsMedia Council is of the view that branded content is within its mandate. Advertising standards may be sufficient for traditional ads, but branded content underlines the fact that accuracy and perhaps reader trust is at risk when journalism skills are used to sell or promote products or services. Read the full paper on branded content here.

Position paper: Wire services and fees

  • Press council membership of wire services is largely unprecedented. Given the wide reach and impact of wire services, the NNC considers membership for wire and syndicated services to be important for readers. It is also important for wire services to remain accountable, and for service members or customers to be assured of transparency regarding complaints about content. Since the time of drafting this paper, the Canadian Press has become a member of the NNC. Read the full paper on wire services membership here.

Position paper: Adjudicating third party content – March 2017

  • If a complaint about third party or wire copy is registered, it is expected that editors will investigate the issue. They cannot reasonably be expected to make unilateral changes, but should consult with the editor in question and find a remedy if needed, as they would with a journalist in their own newsroom. Read the full paper on third party content here.

Position paper: Perceived bias – March 2017

  • The NNC understands that some members of the public may infer bias because we are funded primarily through annual fees from member organizations. However, the quality and transparency of NNC decisions should dispel any concerns of bias. The NNC ensures that complainants’ concerns are taken seriously, treated respectfully, and investigated carefully. Read the full paper on perceived bias here.

Position paper: Partnerships and funding – February 2017

  • Partnerships with non-profits and universities help amplify the NNC’s voice and reach. The NNC has partnered with non-profits and universities to help achieve shared objectives, including co-sponsoring events, co-signing statements about the media, and presenting a media ethics course for journalism students. Read the full paper on partnerships and funding here.