Reporters Without Borders (RSF) says radio stations, television channels, online news sites, newspapers... more than 1,000 media in 80 countries have signed up to the Journalism Trust Initiative (JTI) to restore trust with the public. Certification underlines the transparency of the news media and respect for journalistic best practices.
At a time when mistrust of the media and journalists is growing, and journalistic information is in direct competition with all other types of content on platforms, there is an urgent need to implement structural solutions to create conditions to restore trust, says RSF. This is what the Journalism Trust Initiative (JTI) proposed by Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is all about: it is a certification mechanism aimed at positively distinguishing reliable journalism in the information ecosystem to give it a competitive edge, promoting citizens' right to information.
More than 1,000 media outlets in 80 countries have signed up to the Journalism Trust Initiative (JTI) by assessing their practices, particularly their editorial processes, using the JTI-app tool. Among them, 200 have already published their transparency reports, added RSF. Following this self-assessment, each media organisation can apply for the JTI certification through an external audit carried out by an independent third-party organisation.
Christophe Deloire, secretary general of Reporters Without Borders (RSF) said: "Over the years, the JTI has established itself as one of the most relevant initiatives for attesting to the transparency of the media and, consequently, restoring confidence in journalism. As well as a clear and frank endorsement by the media, the figures prove that there is a relevant benchmark for newsrooms around the world. I salute all those who have committed themselves to this initiative and invite any media interested to join to do so. The JTI can help to give quality journalism back its comparative advantage."
- JTI commitment on every continent A third of the media involved in the JTI are based in Africa, mainly in Côte d'Ivoire and the Democratic Republic of Congo. More than 130 media outlets assessed their practices in these two countries. Another third of the media involved are in Europe, with a high proportion of Ukrainian and French media. In France, the EBRA and TF1 groups obtained their certifications in December 2023, joining France Médias Monde and France Télévisions. The JTI is also being rolled out on a large scale in the United States (with nearly 100 media outlets involved in the assessment) and is developing rapidly in South America and Southeast Asia.
- A competitive advantage for media on platforms In addition to granting a public label, the JTI certification helps to increase the visibility of reliable sources on platforms: media that have responded to this exercise, which focuses on transparency, journalistic methodology and the implementation of ethical principles, can being favoured in algorithmic indexing by platforms such as Microsoft or Newsback, which use the JTI to highlight reliable sources of information.
- Public policy supports the JTI At a legislative level, 11 States have pledged to support the Journalism Trust Initiative, which is also mentioned in the Digital Services Act (DSA) code of practice and in the draft European legislation on media freedom (EMFA).
Initiated by RSF, the JTI was developed under the aegis of the European Committee for Standardisation (CEN) by 130 media organisations, journalists' associations, non-governmental organisations, companies and international organisations to promote free, independent and verified information throughout the world.
The JTI team within RSF offices around the world say they are available to support each media outlet. Find out your level of compliance on the JTI website here.Keep up-to-date with publishing news: sign up here for InPubWeekly, our free weekly e-newsletter.