Scottish Beacon aims to create a collaborative effort to draw attention to under-reported stories that affect local communities.
We publish stories from independent publications, freelance journalists and local community members around Scotland. We believe that local stories matter. So we’re seeking local and community stories that speak to a national audience, that highlight issues – and solutions – that are felt in the different regions of Scotland.
While these may change as we develop, initially we are interested in stories that fall under the following categories:
- Local Democracy: From community councils to local authorities, independent journalists based in communities are best placed to hold power to account.
- Community Empowerment: Stories of communities taking the matter into their own hands, whether through community buy-outs, activism, or other local initiatives.
- Solutions: How are communities locally tackling big issues? We’ll bring you innovative responses and food for thought.
- Social Equality: Stories around health, education, housing, poverty, and employment. A bigger picture of what’s happening right across Scotland.
- Environment: Arguably the most signiﬁcant issue affecting our communities in the future. Good and bad stories of the local environment.
- Culture & Sport: Stories about what is going on in local culture, art, music, literature, ﬁlm, events, sports, and history.
- Community Voices: Stories featuring people that are too often under-represented in the media
We adhere to the five core principles as set out by the Ethical Journalism Network
- Truth & Accuracy: Journalists cannot always guarantee ‘truth’, but getting the facts right is the cardinal principle of journalism. We should always strive for accuracy, give all the relevant facts we have and ensure that they have been checked. When we cannot corroborate information we should say so.
- Independence: Journalists must be independent voices; we should not act, formally or informally, on behalf of special interests whether political, corporate or cultural. We should declare to our editors – or the audience – any of our political affiliations, financial arrangements or other personal information that might constitute a conflict of interest.
- Fairness and Impartiality: Most stories have at least two sides. While there is no obligation to present every side in every piece, stories should be balanced and add context. Objectivity is not always possible, and may not always be desirable (in the face for example of brutality or inhumanity), but impartial reporting builds trust and confidence.
- Humanity: Journalists should do no harm. What we publish or broadcast may be hurtful, but we should be aware of the impact of our words and images on the lives of others.
- Accountability: A sure sign of professionalism and responsible journalism is the ability to hold ourselves accountable. When we commit errors we must correct them and our expressions of regret must be sincere not cynical. We listen to the concerns of our audience. We may not change what readers write or say but we will always provide remedies when we are unfair.
Our guiding codes
We abide by the following codes and standards:
- National Union of Journalists (NUJ) Code of Conduct, which sets out the ethical conduct expected of any journalist
- Impress Standards Code, which sets out to protect the public from invasive and unethical reporting
If you have any questions on this policy, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org