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Journalism Ethics and Standards

Freedom of opinion, expression, and the press are human rights protected under the Pancasila, the 1945 Constitution, and the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Freedom of the press is a public means to obtain information and to communicate for the purpose to meet a basic need and enhance the quality of human life. In instituting press freedom, the Indonesian journalist is also mindful of the nation’s interest, his/her social responsibility, society’s diversity, and religious norms.

In executing its functions, rights, obligations and role, the press respects the basic rights of every person, and as such the press is called upon to be professional and open to public scrutiny.

To ensure press freedom and to meet the public right to obtain correct information, the Indonesian journalist requires a moral foundation and professional ethics as guidance for securing the public trust and upholding integrity and professionalism. On this basis the journalists of Indonesia establish and adhere to the Journalism Code of Ethics.


The Indonesian journalist is independent and produces news stories that are accurate, balanced and without malice.


The Indonesian journalist adheres to professional methods in the execution of a journalistic assignment,


The Indonesian journalist always verifies information, conducts balanced reporting, does not mix facts with biased opinion, and upholds the presumption of innocence principle.


The Indonesian journalist refrains from producing false, slanderous, sadistic and obscene news stories.


The Indonesian journalist does not disclose and broadcast the identity of victims of a sexually-exploitative crime and refrains from identifying a minor who committed a criminal act.


The Indonesian journalist does not misuse his/her profession and accepts no bribe.


The Indonesian journalist has the right of refusal to protect the identity of a news source who does not wish his/her identity and whereabouts to be known, and abides by the conditions for an embargo, background and off the record information as mutually agreed.


The Indonesian journalist does not write or report news based on prejudice or discrimination against anyone on the basis of differences in ethnicity, race, color, religion, gender, and language and does not degrade the dignity of the weak, the poor, the sick, the mentally or physically disabled.


The Indonesian journalist respects the right of the news source’s private life except in the public interest.


The Indonesian journalist immediately retracts, rectifies, and corrects errors and inaccuracies in a news story accompanied with an apology to readers, listeners or viewers.


The Indonesian journalist accedes to the right of reply and the right of correction in a proportional manner.

Final judgment for any breach of the journalism code of ethics rests with the Press Council. Sanctions for any breach of the journalism code of ethics rest with the journalists’ organization and or the press enterprise concerned.

Jakarta, 14 March 2006

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