Albania: Code of Ethics

The 1996 Code of Ethics was used as a basis for the more recently approved Code of Conduct, which was adopted in September 2006 after a decisional process involving all the actors in the media community. This new Code of Conduct applies to all persons undertaking journalistic or editorial activities. The Code therefore covers the field of print media (text and photography) and  electronic media.

The Code recognizes the role of the press in the society and states that “freedom of speech, freedom of information and criticism, freedom of the press and access to official documents are basic elements of a democracy”. The Code states the necessity of “supplying the public with reliable information” and is divided in different sections about accuracy and presentation of information; about the relations of journalists with their sources; the respect of the privacy and the relations among journalists. The Code also provides a definition of the public interest.

According to the UNESCO 2011 publication on Professional Journalism and Self-Regulation in South East Europe and Turkey (pdf here), journalists’ associations of Albania came to a formal agreement to support the implementation of the Code. “However, despite this generally expressed preparedness to abide by the Code, concrete measures to establish other self-regulatory mechanisms were weak.”

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