France: Codes


France has no legal or contractual code of practice applying to journalists as a whole. However, the various professional organisations have produced their own codes, applicable to their own members:

Chapter of the professional duties of French journalists
Adopted by the National Syndicate of French Journalists in 1918 and revised and completed by the Syndicate in 1938.

Charter to the Right of Information
Adopted by the National Syndicate of Journalists (CFDT), the General Syndicate of Journalists (CGT-FO) and the French Federation of Societies of Journalists, Caen, 1973.

Rules and Usages of the daily Le Monde
Published in “Le Style du Monde”, Le Monde’s Style book, in 2002, under the general title “La déontologie”, i.e. professional ethics. The clauses in the list have been left in the original order, the alphabetical order of French subtitles.

Rules and Usages of the Provincial Daily Press
Published in December 1995 by the “Syndicat de la presse quotidienne regionale” (SPQR), the association of the major dailies produced outside the Paris area.

A list of 18 Ethical Principles, accepted in January 1994 by 200 journalists of TF1, the TV network with the largest audience in the country. It was understood as not being a “code” or “charter” but “principles” that a journalist is bound to respect, besides legal obligations and provisions in the collective contract.

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The research leading to this website has received funding from the European Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement No. 244147.