Code of ethics
Factal is founded on a public service mission to protect people from imminent harm and help those in immediate need.
We’re a news organization founded by journalists that uses technology to accelerate and improve our global coverage. Factal is not a social monitoring or data mining company, and we respect the privacy expectations of our sources and users.
We work hard to earn your trust through these high ethical standards:
1. Seek the truth
Facts save lives, and we’re dedicated to accurately reporting the world’s events in real time. Our newsroom takes responsibility for getting the facts right, and we cite original sources. When information is questionable and unverified, we provide context and clarity. When we make a mistake, we correct it as quickly as possible. We invest in technology, training and relationships to avoid mis- and disinformation.
2. Be honest and transparent
We’re honest in our communication with clients, partners, investors, the press and the public. We respond quickly to questions about accuracy, clarity and fairness. When we make an error, we explain why it happened in the first place. We avoid conflicts of interest, real or perceived. We do not misrepresent our identities or engage in disinformation of any kind. We do not accept investment or grants from government intelligence or political sources, and we're transparent about our funding. We’re active in the journalism community, and we share best practices.
3. Respect the rights of others
We believe in an individual’s right to privacy and peaceful protest, and we’re careful to ensure that civil liberties are protected. Factal provides fact-checking and journalistic guidance about news events, not intelligence about individuals or groups. We do not allow our clients or partners to use Factal in any way to track, surveil, target or investigate individuals or groups. We do not allow our clients or partners to use our historic data to predict protests. We only analyze information that’s legitimately and ethically acquired, and we’re transparent about how we use this data. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
4. Be fair and objective
Factal works hard to avoid bias in our coverage, and we’re committed to creating a diverse workplace. We draw from diverse sources, favoring those with firsthand information and the best track record. We link source material whenever possible. We avoid stereotyping people based on race, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, beliefs, national origin, disability, age or any other protected characteristic. Our newsroom staff does not participate in political or other outside activities that may compromise our integrity or impartiality. We do not artificially inflate incidents for our own gain. We do not provide competitive intelligence at the behest of any client. We do our best to treat clients fairly.
5. Regard all lives with equal value
Some of the world’s poorest and most oppressed populations are often discounted in the calculus of attention. Factal holds that all lives have equal value. We strive to help protect people who live, work and travel in all regions of the world by supporting and amplifying high-risk reporting, seeking out ethical sources of local data and enforcing equality in our algorithms.
(Updated 12/7/22 to expand line about stereotypes. Updated 9/2/22 to include partners and historic data. We adapted portions of our code of ethics from the Society of Professional Journalists, the ACLU and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation).