Read about our general policies regarding ethics and standards below
Ethics and Standards
Be inclusive. We welcome and support people of all backgrounds and identities. This includes, but is not limited to members of any sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, race, ethnicity, culture, national origin, social and economic class, educational level, color, immigration status, sex, age, size, family status, political belief, religion, and mental and physical ability.
Be considerate. We all depend on each other to produce the best work we can as a company. Your decisions will affect clients and colleagues, and you should take those consequences into account when making decisions.
Be respectful. We won't all agree all the time, but disagreement is no excuse for disrespectful behavior. We will all experience frustration from time to time, but we cannot allow that frustration become personal attacks. An environment where people feel uncomfortable or threatened is not a productive or creative one.
Choose your words carefully. Always conduct yourself professionally. Be kind to others. Do not insult or put down others. Harassment and exclusionary behavior aren't acceptable. This includes, but is not limited to:
- Threats of violence.
- Discriminatory jokes and language.
- Sharing sexually explicit or violent material via electronic devices or other means.
- Personal insults, especially those using racist or sexist terms.
- Unwelcome sexual attention.
- Advocating for, or encouraging, any of the above behaviour.
Repeated harassment of others. In general, if someone asks you to stop something, then stop. When we disagree, try to understand why. Differences of opinion and disagreements are mostly unavoidable. What is important is that we resolve disagreements and differing views constructively.
Our differences can be our strengths We can find strength in diversity. Different people have different perspectives on issues, and that can be valuable for solving problems or generating new ideas. Being unable to understand why someone holds a viewpoint doesn’t mean that they’re wrong. Don’t forget that we all make mistakes, and blaming each other doesn’t get us anywhere. Instead, focus on resolving issues and learning from mistakes.
Mistakes happen. How we deal with errors in our reporting is important to maintaining our integrity and the trust of readers and sources. When the Chronicle publishes an error, we will acknowledge it and take appropriate steps to correct it as quickly as possible, both online and in print and, if necessary, on social media and other off-platform applications. Readers who wish to alert editors to a needed correction can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Factual errors must be corrected — even if the subject of the error does not formally request a correction. We also correct factual errors made, for example, in an event listing, even if the relevant event has passed. When in doubt about whether a correction or clarification is needed, it is generally best to consult with your editor. Leaving anyone with the impression that we do not admit and rectify mistakes could cause readers to question our journalistic integrity.
Occasionally, an error may not be a misstated fact but a matter of nuance, context or tone. Such mistakes may require clarifications, editor’s notes or a statement from the editor in chief.
The information in a correction should be verified by the reporter, photographer or editor who made the error. Source editors must fact-check the correction as well. All corrections must be brought to the attention of and approved by a section or masthead-level editor before being published.
If a request for a retraction or correction comes from an outside attorney or person threatening a legal response, the editor in chief and our legal counsel must be consulted before any response or decision is made about how to handle the complaint.
Generally, the Make Florida Your Home does not repeat the original error and does not editorialize about the cause or implication of the error in publishing a correction.
It is expected that online stories will be polished and expanded after their initial posting, and it is not necessary to flag every change for readers. But adding a correction or clarification may be appropriate if new reporting has revealed a significant error in an earlier account.
Occasionally, errors due to incorrect information by sources (e.g. law enforcement misstating a death toll) may be handled within the story (e.g. “Police revised a previously reported death count, saying only five people have been confirmed dead.”) If there is any question about whether the error rises to that level, consult with the appropriate section or masthead-level editor.
If an online error was a significant one that could give the reader a false impression, factors such as the nature of the error and how long it has been posted should be considered before a correction is written.
When a significant error is discovered, the story should be corrected and reposted as soon as possible. The person making the change to the online story should first consult with and obtain the approval of a section editor or masthead editor.
Once the change is approved, the story should be changed and a note appended to the revised story that briefly states the nature of the change. If a significant error appears in the url, editors and producers should change the url to reflect the truth.
If incorrect information is shared on a news alert or on social networks, we should notify readers using the same platform and provide the accurate information. In many cases, it may be appropriate to delete the incorrect post. In such cases, a screenshot should be taken of the original post, which should be shared with clarifying information and explain that the post was deleted.
Editorial Review Process
Step 1 - Editors Review Articles
During this stage, reviewers evaluate how well the submission fits the scope of set criteria.
Post-review, there are three basic choices:
- Reject the submission
- Accept the submission and send it to peer review
- Request a revised submission. The original submission is returned with notes and instructions for edits to be made. Once standards are met, the piece can be submitted again
Step 2 - Peer Review
After a submission is approved, the article is reviewed by our executive board which is comprised of a small group of peers.
During the peer review process, professional reviewers that are familiar with the niche and subject matter of the submission are assigned by an editor to evaluate the work.
All the “Facts” of the article are written in a checklist and signed by two reviewers and the author t make sure of all facts are complainant and accurate.
The professional reviewers then analyze the article and leave detailed notes and recommendations.
Step 3 - Editing Review
The editor will objectively evaluate the peer reviews and decide whether to:
- Reject the manuscript outright
- Invite the author(s) to revise and resubmit
- Seek additional reviews
- Accept the work as-is
Then the editor sends their decision to the primary author along with the masked comments of the peer reviewers.
The reviewers will include their own personal recommendations in those comments.
Step 4 - Copy Editing
The manuscript is reviewed by the copyeditor to improve the writing. The author will have a chance to review the copyedits at this point.