Daily Guardian helped craft this framework during a workshop in BGC, Taguig City, Metro Manila on September 26-27, 2023.
The framework was co-created by media representatives from BicoldotPH, ABS-CBN News, Digicast Negros, News5 Digital, Inquirer.net, PressOne.PH, Baguio Chronicle, GMA Integrated News, Mindanews, Palawan News, Facts First PH, VERA Files, Inquirer.net, and BicoldotPH.
Funded by the United States Agency for International Development-Regional Development Mission for Asia (USAID-RDMA) through its Bolstering Media and Information Human Rights in Southeast Asia program, the workshop was organized by Internews, a non-profit organization that trains journalists and offers business expertise to media outlets to become financially sustainable.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) holds a tremendous potential to change the way journalism is produced and disseminated, and the development of AI language models and applications pose numerous implications for journalistic practice and training.
Given these technological advances, news organizations should continue to uphold the principles and practices of ethical journalism. Newsrooms must recognize the benefits as well as the limitations of AI technologies.
The use of AI should primarily improve the workflow of newsrooms and ensure human agency. AI technologies should be rolled out after thorough consultations with internal and external stakeholders.
From recognizing unique human roles to ensuring accountability and promoting public awareness, these guidelines highlight key aspects of AI integration in journalism:
- AI and newsroom team resources: There should be an acknowledgment from media owners and newsroom managers that there are roles that only humans can satisfactorily fulfill, although these roles may evolve with the emergence of new technologies.
- On the motivation behind using AI in journalism: AI should be used for good and not to harm individuals or societies. Using AI in the newsroom should enhance the quality of work and efficiency of delivering news.
- AI bias and reinforcing inequalities: Journalists must be mindful of social biases and real-life inequalities that might be reinforced by AI. They must watch out for and correct these, taking into account ethical principles in journalism.
- Human supervision of AI: Humans should oversee AI use and approve content. The process of using AI in newsrooms should start with a journalist and end with a journalist.
- Full disclosure on AI use: Clearly label AI-generated content. Newsrooms are encouraged to disclose all the AI-powered tools they use in a public page. Media watchdogs should support transparency efforts by doing independent checks of AI-powered content by newsrooms and if the tools used match their disclosures.
- Accountability on AI use: Newsrooms must acknowledge and correct errors in AI-generated content. Audience feedback should be taken into serious consideration.
- Privacy and confidentiality in AI: All newsroom staff members should not input personal, sensitive, and confidential data into the AI tools. The use of AI tools and all
AI-generated content should adhere to data privacy laws and observe best practices.
- Personal data of users: In cases where newsrooms design AI systems, the collection and use of personal data must be minimal and non-sensitive. There should be informed consent from the data subject.
- Adaptability of AI policies: Newsrooms should regularly update policies to keep pace with AI developments. They are encouraged to establish a working group with members of diverse roles and backgrounds and consult with stakeholders.
- Capacity building on AI-powered tools: Newsrooms should invest in AI-related staff training without financially burdening journalists. Journalism schools are encouraged to incorporate AI education in their curriculum.
- Continuous engagement among media organizations on AI use: Newsrooms should foster a co-learning environment on AI best practices.
- AI awareness for the general public: Given the developments in AI use in journalism, there must be a proportional effort for news organizations to contribute in raising audience awareness about its potential benefits and risks. This responsibility is shared by the academe, civil society, and the general public.
NOTE: These guidelines were drafted, refined, and expanded in a workshop facilitated by
Internews and attended by representatives from select national and regional newsrooms in the Philippines on September 27, 2023 at Bonifacio Global City in Taguig. These guidelines drew inspiration from existing policies on AI use from news organizations in the Philippines and in other countries. This document is not prescriptive but can be used as a basis for newsrooms drafting their own AI guidelines.
Participants (in alphabetical order):
- Aireen Perol-Jaymalin, BicoldotPH
- April Benjamin, ABS-CBN News
- Arthur Fuentes, ABS-CBN News
- Barbara Mijares, Digicast Negros
- Christoph Doncillo, News5 Digital
- Don Lejano, Inquirer.net
- Felipe Salvosa II, PressOne.PH
- Frank Cimatu, Baguio Chronicle
- Gabrielle Cayetano, GMA Integrated News
- Horacio Marcos Mordeno, Mindanews
- Ivy Marie A. Mangadlao, Mindanews
- Jan Elmer Badilla, Palawan News
- John Reczon Calay, News5 Digital
- Lala Lacsina, GMA Integrated News
- Mia Magdalena Capuyan Fokno, Facts First PH
- Nica Rhiana Hanopol, VERA Files
- Ralph Gurango, Inquirer.net
- Regina Dioneda, BicoldotPH
- Rjay Castor, Daily Guardian PH
- Vino Lucero, Internews (facilitator)