The paper also is clamping down on quote approval:
We should not allow sources to change what was said in an original interview, although accuracy or the risk of losing an on-the-record quote from a crucial source may sometimes require it. A better and more acceptable alternative is to permit a source to add to a quotation and then explain that sequence to readers.The full memo:
To the staff:
Over the last several days, there have been reports raising compelling questions of journalistic ethics in the practices of allowing sources to set rules on the use of quotations and the sharing of story drafts. We’d like to remind everyone of some core principles and lay down guidelines that should govern those practices at The Post.
The central principle of our journalism is to report the facts as closely as we can ascertain them. We should never do or promise to do anything that would shade the truth or call into question our commitment to reporting the news accurately and fairly. That is essential to the trust we enjoy from the people we work for, our readers.
In response to the issues raised recently, we are modifying the relevant sections of The Post Stylebook. Please read this carefully. We encourage further discussion and will incorporate these specific points in upcoming sessions of Newsroom University.
Marcus Liz John Shirley Peter
Our objective in quoting people is to capture both their words and intended meaning accurately. That requires care in negotiating ground rules with sources. We do not allow sources to change the rules governing specific quotations after the fact. Once a quote is on the record, it remains there. (more...)