About

Australian Associated Press is the beating heart of Australian news

AAP is Australia’s only independent national newswire and has been delivering accurate, reliable and fast news content to the media industry, government and corporate sector for 85 years. We keep Australia informed.

AAP’s newswire service is offered through the following products;

Newsroom

Influencing the agenda every day, AAP’s wire stories and images are fed into most Australian newsrooms around the clock and are ready to publish on all platforms and channels.

AAP delivers over 1,500 original stories per week as they happen. Our coverage spans breaking news, national and international sport, finance, courts, politics and world news. Our customers access our content in real-time through AAP’s Newsroom portal or via auto- or select-based publishing technologies. Our content is supported by our leading news planning tool, Agenda, and SMS notification service.

Contact us to see how we can assist with your content, monitoring and planning requirements.

Photos

AAP has Australia’s biggest and best photo library. Our Walkley Award-winning photographers contribute daily to a pool of high quality imagery that tells the stories of the day and is the archive of tomorrow. We are on site at the biggest moments impacting the Australian people. We also handle tens of thousands of images from our international partners and make them available to our customers.

We offer a subscription and per-image licensing arrangements. Contact us to discuss.

FactCheck

AAP is committed to the fight against misinformation and is IFCN accredited to fact check social media, political and media information.

AAP has a dedicated fact checking team that provides quick, accurate and detailed analysis on a broad range of topics, daily.



AAP Charter of Editorial Independence

AAP Charter of Editorial Independence

Introduction

AAP is an independent agency producing a timely not-for-profit news service to benefit the Australian public, delivered via media outlets and various other platforms.

Striving for the purest form of journalism, AAP holds no political bias nor is it beholden to advertisers or influencers. News value is paramount.

AAP’s news in all formats will maintain the highest standards of accuracy, impartiality, balance and fairness to ensure public trust and confidence.

To achieve this AAP will operate under the following Principles.

Principles

Ownership – AAP is a not-for-profit company and does not have owners. It is motivated by public interest, ensuring the news service is not influenced by third parties.

Independence – With due regard to the public interest, AAP’s news service will remain free from government, corporate, client or factional influence.

Accuracy – AAP’s valued reputation as “the reliable source” will be maintained by ensuring all news is accurate, authoritatively sourced and visual news is not altered so as to misrepresent the news or subjects.

Impartiality – AAP will supply objective news free from political partisanship or bias to ensure its integrity and independence.

Balance and Fairness – AAP will not promote particular views or interests, either through undue emphasis or by suppressing relevant material. Individuals, organisations or groups will have a timely right of reply.

Trust and Confidence – AAP and its staff will work within all relevant legal frameworks to promote public trust and to avoid bringing the news service into disrepute.

Future – Opportunities to develop or adapt the AAP news service within the auspices of this charter will be assessed on merit and actioned as the Board and managers see fit.

Advisory Committee

An AAP Editorial Advisory Committee will be established to monitor the independence of the AAP news service and promote compliance with the principles.

The Committee will comprise members appointed by the Board and will meet on a regular basis, providing guidance and advice as necessary.

It will aim to preserve the integrity, independence, and freedom from bias of the AAP news service, as well as protect and promote the value of AAP’s news to the Australian public.



Code of practice

AAP has formulated a Code of Practice for its journalists. The code brings together the industry’s best practices. All AAP journalists are expected to read it and abide by it.

AAP’s role as the national news agency is to produce a news service which maintains the highest standards of accuracy, impartiality and fairness.

The company’s policy on editorial standards addresses news agency requirements, and is in line with generally recognised principles of journalism.

AAP’s policy is as follows:

1. Accuracy

1.1. AAP has a valued reputation as “the reliable source”. All information, comment and opinion reported on our wires must be authoritatively sourced.

1.2. Sources must be identified by name unless there are compelling reasons for not doing so. Always query a source’s motives when they request anonymity.

1.3. The vague attribution “sources say” is generally not acceptable, unless it is the only way to protect a vital source in a matter of public interest.

1.4. While photographic images can be enhanced to improve resolution, an image must not be altered in such a way that it misrepresents the subject matter.

2. Impartiality and Fairness

2.1. AAP does not promote particular views or commercial interests, either through undue emphasis or by suppressing relevant material.

2.2. In reporting views on controversial matters, always seek to include a fair balance of other views. Any comment or conjecture by the journalist writing the story should be identifiable as such.

2.3. AAP journalists have latitude to express their own views more freely only when, in the opinion of the Editor in Chief or Editor, they have special knowledge or expertise or sufficient reputation. Such pieces should be labelled as View, Comment or Analysis.

2.4. Individuals or groups singled out for criticism should be given a right of reply, in the original story whenever possible.

2.5. Emotive or contentious adjectives should be avoided unless they are being quoted.

3. Corrections

3.1. Inaccuracies or suspected inaccuracies which affect the integrity of stories on our wires must be dealt with promptly.

3.2. When we acknowledge an inaccuracy, a correction should be issued at urgent priority.

3.3. Challenges to accuracy or fairness in our stories must be referred to the News Editor or Editor. If there is serious doubt, particularly on legal grounds, we must alert subscribers to hold a story pending clarification. If such doubts are confirmed, we must advise subscribers to kill the story, issue take-down notices to internet subscribers and replace with a corrected version as soon as possible.

4. Conflicts of Interest

4.1. Journalists must consult the Editor before covering a story which involves or might involve a conflict of interest, either through active membership of a political, lobby or community group, or from personal, family or financial considerations.

4.2. Journalists must not use for their own profit financial information they receive in advance of its general publication, nor should they pass such information to others.

4.3. Journalists must not write about shares, securities and companies in whose performance they know that they or their close families have a significant financial interest without disclosing the interest to the Editor or the Finance Editor.

4.4. Journalists must disclose to the Editor or Finance Editor any personal trading, either directly or through nominees or agents, in shares or securities about which they have written recently or about which they intend to write in the near future.

4.5. Failure to notify the Editor of any real or potential conflict of interest before a story is issued on AAP wires may result in dismissal.

5. Invitations

5.1. Invitations to AAP journalists from government, commercial and sporting organisations for expenses-paid trips and other assistance to cover events in which those organisations have an interest must be referred to the Editor.

5.2. Generally, such invitations will be accepted only if they are made to AAP as an organisation and provided the Editor or appropriate desk editor is satisfied that the event is worth covering.

5.3. In no circumstances can AAP guarantee to write a particular story.

5.4. Travel stories written as a result of invitations should concentrate on the region or the area, rather than the specifics of a hotel or resort. Travel features should include a “how to get there” section at the bottom of the story with details of airline schedules, etc, (and) a disclosure such as “The author travelled as a guest of…”.

5.5. No AAP journalist may be interviewed in a professional capacity in any of the news media, nor take part in a panel discussion, without the prior approval of the Editor.

6. Misrepresentation

6.1. AAP does not sanction misrepresentation, deceit or subterfuge to obtain information.

6.2 AAP journalists must clearly identify themselves as such when interviewing and gathering material.

6.3. Journalists must not obtain information or publish material obtained clandestinely by using listening devices or by intercepting private telephone conversations.

7. Discrimination

7.1. Gratuitous emphasis should not be placed on gender, religion, minority groups, sexual orientation, race, colour or physical or mental disability. Such references should be included in copy only where they are strictly relevant.

8. Offensive Language

8.1. Offensive language, especially obscenities and terms of abuse relating to particular groups in the community should be used only when they are essential to the meaning of the story, and never gratuitously.

8.2. Circumstances in which the words used are essential to a story might include use of a swear word in public by a major public figure; or a direct quote of an important piece of evidence in a court case, but then only if the word itself is an integral part of the evidence.

8.3. Stories containing offensive language must begin with a warning to subscribers, so that they can make their own judgment.

9. Privacy

9.1. Personal privacy should be respected unless it interferes with publication of matters of public record, or of significant public interest. If in doubt, consult the Editor.

9.2. Approaches to people suffering trauma or grief should be undertaken with care and sensitivity.

9.3. Relatives of people convicted or accused of crime should not be identified unless reference to them is strictly relevant to the story.

10. Children

10.1. Children under the age of 16 should not be unduly prompted in interviews or given inducements to co-operate, and every effort should be made to seek the permission of a parent or other legally responsible adult.

10.2. Children should not be approached in schools without the permission of the school authority.

10.3. Children should not be identified in crime or court reports without legal advice.

11. Suicide

11.1. AAP does not report graphic details of suspected suicides or suicide attempts. See separate briefing on reporting suicides.

11.2. Any suicide notes obtained by AAP staff must immediately and unfailingly be referred to the Editor.

12. Public Emergencies

12.1. Great care must be taken in reporting threats of violence to the public by bombs or other means of extortion such as contamination of groceries.

12.2. Generally, we do not run stories about hoaxes or suspected hoaxes unless there is an overriding public interest. If in doubt, consult the Editor.

13. Social Media

13.1 AAP journalists may not use personal blogs or social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook to post AAP-generated material or links to such material, or to make comments relating to their work, other AAP employees or to AAP and its policies and practices.

13.2 Content from social networking sites should be used in AAP stories only when the material is publicly available and the bona fides of the source has been established and checked. This should be done in consultation with the desk editor.

13.3 Material from social networking sites like Facebook may be used only from pages that are publicly available. Journalists must not attempt to bypass security settings to obtain access to such material. Images from such sites can only be used in consultation with the News Editor or Editor. 



Our standards

AAP has developed a rigorous set of principles to ensure its journalists and journalism meet the very highest of community expectations.

Introduction

AAP Standards upholds the high standard of journalism in all formats to promote trust and confidence in AAP’s news service by:

  • Reinforcing AAP’s stated principles of accuracy, fairness, balance and independence
  • Advising on policies, standards and style guides to keep pace with changing community attitudes
  • Reviewing newsroom responses to external complaints and to criticisms of the AAP news service to ensure they are fair and timely
  • Providing an independent appeal and response procedure for external complainants
  • Reporting to the executive management team on key editorial performance metrics

Operations

AAP Standards holds regular quarterly meetings, with additional meetings scheduled as needed to address complaints. The committee is comprised of independent chair and two other AAP staff members not involved in daily editorial operations. The chair is appointed by the Editor-In-Chief for a minimum two-year term.

Scope and Authority

The committee will:

  • Respond to all complainants.
  • Provide actionable recommendations on editorial issues as required to the Editor-in-Chief, who will provide a timely response. If the response is deemed unsatisfactory, the committee may refer the matter to the CEO.
  • Reconsider and investigate complaints on appeal without fear or favour.

Contact

AAP is committed to maintaining the highest standards of accuracy, impartiality and fairness. AAP is a member of, and is bound by our own Code of Practice, and the Standards of Practice drafted by the Australian Press Council.

https://www.presscouncil.org.au/

If you believe AAP has breached its standards, please contact us at standards@aap.com.au.

If you are not satisfied by the response you receive from AAP Standards, you may contact the Australian Press Council at info@presscouncil.org.au, by phone on +61 2 9261 1930, or via this form.

https://www.presscouncil.org.au/complaints-form/



History

AAP has a rich history spanning decades.

AAP was founded by Keith Murdoch in 1935 to syndicate the cost of international newswires between Australian news publications.

AAP’s Newswire and FactCheck businesses were acquired in August 2020 and transformed into a purpose driven not-for-profit organisation. AAP no longer has any shareholders and is committed to independent, fact-based journalism.

AAP has had a rich history developing ground breaking businesses around its core newswire operations. Previous part ownership of Reuters and AAPT are just some of the highlights of the influential business.