News Research Credit Policy 

This is from an announcement that is posted on a column at the
library's entrance. It originally appeared in an issue of the newsroom bulletin,
Times News. The policy has been in effect for well over a decade.

These guidelines are also spelled out to new reporters and editors on 
their library/research orientation which usually takes place before the end of 
their first month on staff.

Times News

Credit where credit is due...

A recent
Times News item hailing the work of two reporters who investigated the
Hernando County Building Department failed to notice that significant research
for the opening piece was done by the library's Kitty Bennett. We regret the

But it gives us the opportunity to discuss when it is appropriate to publish a
credit line for the researchers.

The following criteria are circulating in library circles:

Planning: When the researcher's contribution to the planning of a project helps
direct and shape the outcome. When the researcher, for example, suggests
important sources, areas of investigation, key questions, etc.

Interpretation: When the researcher synthesizes information from variety of
sources to yield new or unique conclusions.

Attribution: When the results of the research, whether the work is original or a
compilation of previously published information, may be subject to questions
from readers.

Merit: When, because of the above considerations, research work is judged by
editors and by the news research team to be deserving of special mention in
print. Merit is based on quality of work, not quantity of information.

Policies in News Libraries
SLA News Division Home

Posted on 12/04/01
Amy Disch