Journalism has a trust problem. Let’s start solving it.
The public’s trust in news media keeps declining. It’s time for journalists to get to work.
Since 2016, we’ve been learning (alongside our partner newsrooms) about simple steps journalists can take to build trust. We can explain why we’re worthy of the public’s time, attention and support. We can get on the record about our mission, ethics and decision-making processes. We can listen with humility to better understand how people see our coverage and what they need from us.
Trust Kits offer step-by-step guides for journalists ready to demonstrate credibility and actively earn trust.
These kits have everything you need to start explaining the parts of journalism we know news consumers are most curious (and most uninformed) about. Each Trust Kit breaks down big trust-building strategies into actionable steps so you can start being more transparent with your audience and be seen as a credible news source.
Start exploring by selecting any of the bolded topics below.
We’ll be continually updating and adding to this list of Trust Kits. Sign up for our Trust Tips newsletter to be get alerted when new kits publish. If you run into questions or are finding your self needing help, reach out to our team on Twitter or via email.
Listening to reach new audiences
Asking for audience input
Engaging through comments
Who are journalists?
Ethics and Fairness
Make your ethics public
Reporter mission statements
Checking for bias and polarization
Create a strong “About us” page
How News Works
Earning trust with sources
Navigating the news
Funding and ownership
Labeling opinion content
Rethinking crime coverage
Build trust on-air
Build trust with products
Getting buy-in for trust work
Earning trust in any role
Trust Kits for Educators
Today’s journalism educators are sending students into a complicated media landscape. With trust in news reaching new lows in recent years, it’s no longer enough to just do good journalism, journalists must work to actively demonstrate credibility and earn their community’s trust. These Trusting News Educator Trust Kits will give you research-backed strategies to help prepare students to build trust with communities.
The kits have primarily been designed to help students who will work in a newsroom or other information-sharing position. But we have created two levels within each kit. The basic level can help any student learn more generally about the media and information sharing. We hope this will help the content be easily added to curriculums for introductory communication and media literacy classes. When you see something labeled ADVANCED this means the content and resources are designed for students actively producing or learning how to produce journalism.
Trusting News would like to thank the Scripps Howard Fund for funding the creation of these kits. We would also like to thank the many educators who have worked with us through the years and inspired this work. If you would like more resources to bring into your classroom check out the other Trust Kits listed above. If you have questions about these kits or have used the content in your classroom and have feedback or suggestions please contact Lynn Walsh, Lynn@TrustingNews.org.
Educator Trust Kits
How to talk about journalism and “the media”
How students can earn trust with sources (ADVANCED)
Engage and listen to build trust
Respond to users/listen to the community (ADVANCED)