Gawker Media Group’s web properties practice honest, conversational journalism about stories—whimsical or serious, joyous or grotesque—that matter, or should matter, to our readers. Some stories rely on our own reporting and ideas, and some respond to news generated elsewhere. The same rules apply.
No policy is sufficient to govern the decisions that our reporters and editors have to make on an hourly basis. But this policy should serve as a guide both to Gawker Media readers and staffers as to the kind of stories we should aspire to in each instance: Those that enlighten, challenge, decode, untangle, explain, reveal, and tell the truth.
They are guided by the following precepts:
We tell our readers what we know, how we know it, and why we believe it matters. We disclose our conflicts, air our biases, and show our work. We don’t pretend to know what we don’t. Our reporting is guided by a desire to help our readers understand their world, whether the subject matter is trivial or meaningful. We reject balance as a virtue but embrace fairness, and endeavor to recognize the humanity of those we cover. We aim to write honestly, transparently, and unsentimentally, but also decently. Honest reporting can be painful to subjects, and both they and our other readers are entitled to a reasonable explanation as to the purpose and point of a story.
We are prepared to say what others are too polite, intimidated, or compromised to say. The people and institutions who exercise power—be it political, cultural, corporate, or technological—do not and should not exercise exclusive control of their public narratives, images, and personae. We will not limit or calibrate our reporting to suit an advertiser, provide an advertiser access to a story prior to publication, or otherwise permit an advertiser to influence a story. Gawker Media Group sometimes receives a commission when readers buy products to which we link to in editorial posts. When our writers and editors write about products and services, it’s because they want to cover them, and believe that our readers want to or should know about them.
We listen to our readers, we don’t condescend to them, and we reject the artifice and sanctimony of news delivered from on high. We don’t take ourselves too seriously, and we tell things as they are. In the pursuit of explanation and understanding, we embrace the full range of rhetorical and writing devices, from mischievous satire to passionate advocacy. As others have described our ethos, If it’s interesting, it’s news.