FashionUnited Editorial Ethics
Journalism’s most valuable currency is credibility but readers trust in news media is fragile. At FashionUnited we believe that trust and transparency go hand in hand. Being clear and transparent about how FashionUnited editors work reporting the news, about who and what our sources are and how we use them, lies at the core of the editorial ethics code published on this page.
Special thanks to the Online News Association (ONA) for providing the online tools that have helped to write this code and making it as complete as possible.
Nature of Our Journalism
FashionUnited journalists are honest, accurate, truthful and fair.
FashionUnited news coverage is factual, without expression of opinions, but journalists are encouraged to provide commentary in related posts or follow up articles, being transparent about their professional opinions and sharing their expertise.
Our journalists, salespeople and executives work to ensure that advertisers, sponsors and contributors have no influence over our news coverage.
Despite FashionUnited’s close ties to the fashion industry, we provide factual coverage in a neutral voice.
FashionUnited journalists take responsibility to ensure the accuracy of information that they publish and our journalists are open to the community’s help in confirming or correcting information.
FashionUnited aims to provide accurate context for all news reporting and clearly distinguishes fact from opinion in all articles.
Our journalists ensure that sources are reliable and make clear to the audience who and what the sources are, what motivations sources may have and any conditions people may have set for giving information.
If an article includes criticism of people or organizations, our journalists will give them the opportunity to respond.
FashionUnited never pays for interviews.
Our journalists can provide interviewees with transcripts upon request to ensure accuracy or to clarify complicated or technical matters. Interviewees can not alter the context or angle of the story. Our journalists record interviews and retain notes or transcripts of all interviews for verification purposes.
FashionUnited consistently includes clear attributions throughout a story and names al sources by name.
Fashionunited includes source attribution in the news texts themselves. We are investigating if we can also include links, that provide additional information.
When our journalists use material from our archives or from an author’s previous work in a current story, they note that the material has been published before.
Balance and Fairness
In breaking news situations, our journalists will attempt to gather comments from all key sides; if comments are not immediately available, FashionUnited will publish the story without them, make clear that our journalists were unable to get some comment and update the news story as needed.
FashionUnited respects its audience and those we write about. Our journalists take into consideration how their work and its permanence online may affect the subjects of our reporting, the fashion industry and the larger world.
In news reporting and interviews FashionUnited will use mostly full and complete quotes or paraphrase.
In case of paraphrasing a quote to serve the flow of a story, our journalists will make sure the meaning of the person being quoted is represented correctly.
Gifts & Free Travel
FashionUnited journalists can not accept gifts with a value greater than 50 Euro.
Our journalists may accept free travel tickets or press passes to cover events, but will disclose those invitations in their reporting. Tickets or press passes to cover events do not automatically buy editorial coverage on our platform.
Our journalists are free to express opinions on social media.
FashionUnited encourages all staff members to retweet, reblog, share and otherwise pass along things they find interesting on social media. The company trusts them to provide context where appropriate.
FashionUnited will edit or delete inaccurate social media posts, so people who haven’t seen the corrections will not spread them on social media.
FashionUnited journalists take great care to avoid making errors.
If an error occurs, it will be corrected quickly, completely and visibly. Corrections are shown in the same place the incorrect material originally appeared (at the bottom of the same story).
Our website will show all changes that have been made to online stories that alter the content of the story. Corrections of spelling, grammar or typos, that do not alter the meaning of the story, will not be shown.
The Integrity of our Archive
FashionUnited values its fashion news archive which goes back to 2002. In order to keep this record of fashion history intact FashionUnited does not remove material from its archives.
Any errors in our archived content will be corrected and the corrections disclosed in the same place.
FashionUnited will consider exceptions to its policy regarding archived articles in extreme cases, such as abuse, danger to someone's personal safety or if archived material does not live up to FashionUnited’s (ethical) standards.
FashionUnited requires all advertising including news-like content and advertorials to be clearly identified.
FashionUnited can assist advertisers in creating advertising material upon request, but these commercial activities are strictly separated from our editorial / journalistic activities, -calendar and -staff.
FashionUnited journalists verify sources, and require approval to make use of social media and publicly available content that originates from private individuals (like Facebook postings).
FashionUnited does not offer the possibility for online commenting at this time. Comments can be sent directly to the editorial department, [email protected], to be answered by the editorial staff.
FashionUnited uses confidential sources sparingly to provide important information that cannot be obtained through on-the-record sources and will disclose to readers the reasons for granting confidentiality.
FashionUnited can publish information from confidential sources that is considered reliable, but does not publish the opinions of unnamed sources.
Clickbait and Metrics
FashionUnited editors are encouraged to write clever, creative headlines and social media posts that will entice readers to click on our stories, but headlines will not make promises that our stories don’t deliver.
We use metric considerations as one of a number of factors in determining what we cover and how we place stories.
FashionUnited journalists avoid identifying -- by name or photo -- children who are connected with a crime as perpetrators, victims or witnesses.
Our journalists always obtain a parent’s permission before interviewing or photographing a child.
Mental Health and Suicide
FashionUnited will cover individual events of suicide as news stories if they involve prominent figures in the fashion industry in a neutral tone of voice, avoid using emotional adjectives and include contact information for resources for people in mental health crises.
FashionUnited only publishes about crime if the crime has relevance to (people in) the fashion industry.
FashionUnited will replace obscenities, vulgarities and slurs with something that implies the word rather than stating it directly (e.g. “f---”).
The same standards on obscenities, vulgarities and slurs will be applied to reader comments on stories.
Race and Gender
Racial, ethnic, gender and/or sexuality identifiers will only be used when specifically germane to a story but not otherwise.
The word transgender will only be used as an adjective and only when relevant to the story. For example, "Susan is a transgender woman" if Susan wishes to be identified as such, otherwise, Susan is a designer or a model f.i. Any further references referring to how a person was born and/or external anatomy should be omitted.
Sensitive and Sensational Material
FashionUnited will run sensitive material with stories with notes of warning and after internal debate has demonstrated a clear public interest in and value from the publication.
Our journalists will refrain from running sensational material without a specific news angle to prevent running such material for revenue purposes, such as increased digital traffic.
User Generated Content
FashionUnited considers User Generated Content an extension of our own journalism. Our publication does not run or use such material unless it’s authentic and relevant.