30pin was founded with industry-standard journalistic principles in mind. We believe smaller and more niche publications should strive for the same level of integrity as established media giants. At the same time, we understand that some of the principles, like a separation of editorial and sales staff, are not feasible for an outlet with a permanent staff of one.
This is the initial version of the ethics statement, made public just before 30pin’s launch in August 2020. The document, especially clauses on sponsored content and advertising, will be expanded over time as 30pin grows and refines its principles. A copy of this statement is published on GitHub. For transparency reasons, any changes to the statement should be pushed as commits on GitHub before updating the original text on 30pin.com/ethics.
Just like any respectable outlet, 30pin operates in good faith, with its authors and contributors thriving for truth, double-checking every bit of information, and giving every party involved their right to be heard. Yuri Litvinenko, 30pin’s founding publisher and author of this statement, is a member of Journalists’ and Media Workers’ Union, an independent Russian union of journalists.
30pin authors adhere to the Global Charter of Ethics for Journalists by the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ). Additionally, when dealing with unconfirmed information, we postpone publishing it until we can check it against at least one more source. This policy applies to 30pin’s own sources as well as reports by other media outlets.
Dealing with Things of Value
30pin will not accept gifts or intangible favors from companies or PR agencies, including travel coverage or quid pro quo access, and will decline using them if provided unsolicited. We may keep some personal commemorative items that hold no monetary value (like letters of congratulations). For the time being, 30pin authors do accept travel opportunities when found beneficial to their readers.
When necessary, our authors might receive items of value from manufacturers, publishers or entities involved in conserving and presenting artifacts (museums, libraries, private collectors, etc.) These items will be used for purposes of making an article only and will be returned afterwards. If it’s not possible or practical to do so, we’ll sell these items and donate proceeds to charities and non-profits of the 30pin choice. If that’s not possible either, we’ll dispose the goods in a sustainable manner.
In case of personal donations, 30pin will decide on a case-per-case basis whether to accept the goods, use them in making the article, and keep them after covering. If we feel the donor might unfairly benefit from the coverage, we’ll refrain from accepting or covering the goods. The same goes for any possible conflicts of interest on the donor’s behalf.
Every transaction mentioned in this section should be disclosed in a relevant 30pin article.
Sponsored Content & Backlinks
30pin reserves the right to offer sponsorship deals in the form of clearly marked advertisements or mentions within published articles. Such sponsorship deals should be done in advance. The sponsor must not know what the subject of a future article will be, neither they should exercise any editorial or creative control over said articles. 30pin does not endorse any sponsors or their products, but it does screen them for safety risks of any kind. In case you’ve notice a potentially harmful ad on the 30pin web site or any of its social media pages, please write us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To maintain the editorial integrity, 30pin will not offer tailor-made sponsored content of any kind until a dedicated writing position is filled. Said professional will waive their rights to be involved in any non-sponsored content creation on 30pin. The site will not accept any candidates coming from a prospective sponsor, neither it will hire anyone with a spon-con agreement from the get-go.
The spon-con policy will be outlined and published before the first agreement of the said nature is reached. A sponsor must agree to the said policy. Any further revisions to the policy should not grant any added rights or ways to control the research or creative process.
Links are a matter of editorial process. 30pin does not accept paid backlink offers. 30pin will not agree to free ones either, aside from rare cases of fixing a dead link or a technical mistake in URLs. In that case, a standard corrections policy is applied, complete with a notice.
30pin will not withdraw or kill any published story unless it contains grave factual errors which can’t be corrected without severely altering the point of the article. In that case, the article’s text should be replaced with a disclaimer stating the reason for the withdrawal. In 24 hours, 30pin must release a statement explaining how the error was made and what will be done to prevent similar ones in the future.
30pin should not “unpublish” the story: any withdrawal must not break any incoming links or leave an HTTP 404 error at the original URL.
In case a court of the Russian Federation (where 30pin’s legal entity is registered) orders to remove an article, 30pin will have to comply with it. There are no known cases in which a Russian court ordered a Russian web site to remove an article in English. However, such precedents might be legally possible. 30pin will assist any other publisher willing to pick the article up and transfer it to another jurisdiction. General disclaimer / no dead links policies will apply.
All 30pin stories will carry a byline of its authors. Every co-author or contributor (including translators, local reporters, data journalists etc.) should be mentioned in the byline on the top of the article. Editors and proofreaders should be credited in the closing paragraph of the article, as well as people providing sources or arranging contacts unless they have a valid reason to be granted anonymity.
In case a 30pin contributor disagrees with an editorial decision regarding their article, they might exercise their right to remove their name from the byline of an already-published material. This right is granted by § 47 of the Russian law on media (27.12.1991 No. 2124-1). 30pin will honor this right worldwide unless local laws of the contributor’s country of residence explicitly prevent doing so.
Per the law mentioned, a contributor has the right to block using their name in the byline if they find an article to be contrary to their convictions. In that case, an article should not be published on 30pin.