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Student journalists can ward off prior review, Hazelwood with TAO pledge

Posted by on Feb 5, 2013 in Blog, Hazelwood, Law and Ethics, News, Scholastic Journalism, Teaching, Uncategorized | 0 comments


Student journalists can ward off prior review, Hazelwood by taking TAO pledge #25Hzlwd ‎

by Kathy Schrier
Hazelwood stories: Student journalists who take the TAO of Journalism Pledge, promise to be “Transparent, Accountable and Open” in their practice of journalism. Upon taking the pledge, they may post the TAO of Journalism Seal with their masthead. It’s a public promise to do the best journalism possible, and a way to tell readers/viewers and school administrators that their trust is valued.hazelwoodcolor

The TAO of Journalism Pledge was introduced four years ago by the Washington News Council as way for professional journalists to rebuild credibility in a rapidly changing media environment. The idea caught on, worldwide. Now journalists across the U.S. and as far away as Mozambique have taken the TAO of Journalism Pledge, and post the TAO of Journalism Seal with their work.

The Journalism Education Association endorsed the idea three years ago, and included a TAO of Journalism Sign Up Day on the Wednesday of Scholastic Journalism Week. This year, student journalists are again encouraged to Take the TAO of Journalism Pledge on TAO sign-up day, Wednesday, Feb. 20.

Here’s how you do it:

  1. Go to and click on “Take the Pledge.”
  2. Click on “Students: Click here to make it official.”
  3. Fill out and submit the short online form.
  4. Take a photo of your staff taking the TAO of Journalism Pledge.
    Send a copy of the photo to to be posted on the TAO website.

What you will get:

  1. Downloadable versions of the TAO of Journalism Seal that can be posted online or with your printed masthead
  2. Once the Seal is in use, your program will be listed in the “Directory” on the TAO of  Journalism website
  3. Temporary tattoos of the TAO of Journalism Seal for every member of your staff
  4. A poster with the text of the TAO of Journalism Pledge to display in your staff room
  5. Improved credibility and trust in your student media by school administrators and your audience in general



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Following the TAO: Take the pledge as commitment to transparency, sound reporting

Posted by on Feb 8, 2011 in Blog, Law and Ethics, News, Scholastic Journalism, Teaching | 0 comments


Whitney High journalists (Calif.) take the Tao of Journalism pledge Feb. 9, 2011.

Student journalists who practice ethical journalism and want assure readers, viewers and school administrators of their commitment to excellence, can now go public by taking the TAO of Journalism” pledge .

The TAO Pledge asks journalists to promise that they will be “Transparent” about who they are and how the story was developed; “Accountable” for, and willing to correct any errors; and “Open” to other points of view. This idea, introduced by the Washington News Council, is gaining traction with media organizations around the world.

The Journalism Education Association has endorsed the TAO of Journalism Pledge as one way student media can instill trust in their programs.

JEA encourages schools and student media to sign the Pledge during Scholastic Journalism Week on Wednesday, Feb. 23 and to invite their school administrators to sign on, as well. Any student media group who “takes the TAO Pledge” will be listed on the TAO of Journalism website with a link to their website.

Students can then post the TAO Seal in their masthead and they will receive a poster of the TAO Pledge that can be displayed as a public reminder of their commitment.

Once students take the pledge, they need to be sure to follow the pledge to show their schools and their communities the importance of professional standards.

• BONUS for student media groups who take the TAO Pledge during Scholastic Journalism Week: Temporary tattoos of the TAO seal for all members of the staff.

Click on “Pledge” at the top of the home page.

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