Times media policies raise eyebrows

The New York Times recently released new social media policies for its newsroom staff, detailing that the staff should not post political views on their social media accounts. Under the new guidelines, The Times reporters must not post anything on their private accounts that “undercuts The Times’s journalistic reputation,” as these so-called “private” posts would be operating in the public sphere and reflecting back on the newspaper.

The New York Times has come under fire in recent months for biased reporting, a charge that is perpetuated through the highly politicized tweets and posts of some its reporters. However, the timing of this announcement is baffling. While journalistic peers like the Associated Press and Bloomberg have followed similar guidelines for much longer, the belated push at The Times to adopt these policies comes shockingly late for an organization based on timeliness.

The Ticker has its own social media guidelines that all staff must follow. During the Undergraduate Student Government election cycle, staff members are not allowed to publicly show support for any candidate. If a staff member follows a page for a candidate on social media to follow their updates, that staff member must follow all of the candidates’ posts in order to remain fair. Impartiality remains paramount.