When to unpublish

Delete ButtonNews organizations are facing increasing numbers of requests from sources to remove their names from stories they say are causing them ongoing grief. Some were once charged with a crime, but not convicted. Others  volunteered to share profoundly personal experiences with a reporter — and now regret they did.

Four years ago I was part of a Canadian Association of Journalists ethics committee that advised journalists to resist these requests to unpublish stories — however heart-wrenching some might be. We gave journalists an out — in “some rare cases” — but didn’t explain what this might look like.

Now the committee has revisited the issue in an attempt to provide more clarity over when — and how — journalists might evaluate a request to unpublish a story.

The result is our Case Study and Analysis on Unpublishing. Take a read  on J-Source.