One organization that has been active in journalism reform and newsroom training is Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism.
There you can learn more about an influential publication: The Elements of Journalism: What Newspeople Should Know and the Public Should Expect by Bill Kovach and Tom Rosenstiel. The authors summarize the purpose of journalism — “to provide people information to be free and self-governing.”
They list these ways of fulfilling that purpose:
- Journalism’s first obligation is to the truth.
- Its first loyalty is to citizens.
- Its essence is a discipline of verification.
- Its practitioners must maintain an independence from those they cover.
- It must serve as an independent monitor of power.
- It must provide a forum for public criticism and compromise.
- It must strive to make the significant interesting and relevant.
- It must keep the news comprehensive and proportional.
- Its practitioners must be allowed to exercise their personal conscience.