Jim Lehrer’s nine rules for journalists

Jim Lehrer’s nine rules for journalists and where today’s reporters have fallen short.

  • Rule 1: Do nothing I cannot defend.
  • Rule 2: Cover, write and present every story with the care I would want if the story were about me.
  • Rule 3: Assume there is at least one other side or version to every story.
  • Rule 4: Assume the viewer is as smart and caring and good a person as I am
  • Rule 5: Assume the same about all people on whom I report.
  • Rule 6: Assume personal lives are a private matter until a legitimate turn in the story absolutely mandates otherwise.
  • Rule 7: Carefully separate opinion and analysis from straight news stories and clearly label everything
  • Rule 8: Do not use anonymous sources or blind quotes except on rare and monumental occasions. No one should be allowed to attack another anonymously.
  • Rule 9: I am not in the entertainment business.