User Generated Content (UGC)

  • Verification of User Generated Content (UGC) in news stories

    CBC is responsible for all content on its news sites. This policy covers text, image, video or audio contributions from the public which are incorporated into news coverage on any platform.

    Material that originates from a non-CBC source is clearly identified as such.

    Before text, image, video or audio is published, its provenance and accuracy is verified.

    In exceptional circumstances, it may be difficult to authenticate a contribution. There may be times where because of timeliness or if it is in the public interest, we decide to publish without full verification. We are clear with the audience about what we know. The decision to publish material without full authentication must be referred to the Director.

  • Depiction of violence

    We reflect the reality of the situations we report. We also respect the sensibilities of our viewers, listeners and readers.

    Scenes of violence and suffering are part of our coverage of wars, disaster, crime and conflict.

    We respect our audience by assessing the impact of our images according to time of day and the context of the program where such material is appearing.

    Programmers and journalists must be familiar with CRTC regulations about the depiction of violence and adhere to those guidelines.

    If it is necessary to use graphic images, we will put a warning ahead of their use.

  • Explicit sexual or violent content

    Violence, nudity and sexuality are never presented without good reason. They may be justified when they are important to an understanding of the world we live in. Where they are necessary, we present them without undue exploitation, voyeurism or sensationalism and without trivializing, encouraging or glorifying.

    We treat painful scenes with discretion and restraint and without prolonging them unduly.

    When it is necessary to present explicit content that some could find shocking, we provide an audience advisory.

  • Payment to Sources

    To ensure we maintain our independence, we do not pay for information from a source in a story.

    However, payment of fees at recognized rates to specialists for an expert report or a scientific analysis is acceptable. This is not chequebook journalism. In this context the payment of fees need not be reported on air.

    Increasingly, audience members are becoming contributors; providing photos or footage of news events. As CBC does pay for freelance content, it may be appropriate, in rare circumstances, to pay for authenticated content. A decision to do so must be referred to the Director.

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