Via the New York Observer comes a memo from NYT standards editor, Craig Whitney. Whitney, it seems, just completed a road trip and after seeing numerous political bumper stickers on his journeys felt compelled to clarify with newsroom staffers how and where they should be sharing their political views (i.e. they shouldn’t).
Journalists have no place on the playing fields of politics…they may not campaign for, demonstrate for, or endorse candidates, ballot causes or efforts to enact legislation. They may not wear campaign buttons or themselves display any other insignia of partisan politics. They should recognize that a bumper sticker on the family car or a campaign sign on the lawn may be misread as theirs, no matter who in their household actually placed the sticker or the sign.Also, don’t forget the world 2.0! White cautions New York Times staffers to steer clear of personal blogs, YouTube, and Facebook, “don’t say anything in a blog, video, radio or television program or any other medium that you couldn’t say in the paper or on our Website about politics or anything else.”