For the first time, journalists across the globe will have free access to BBC journalist training guides on the use of language previously only available to BBC reporters. The guides, which have been developed into six languages by BBC World Service and BBC College of Journalism, focus on language, in particular its usage and style when reporting and writing for TV, radio and online.
The language used in each guide has been fine-tuned over many years by BBC journalists reporting in Arabic, Chinese, Farsi, French, Russian and Urdu.The guides are available to journalists and the public alike on BBC websites: bbcarabic.com; bbcchinese.com; bbcpersian.com; bbcrussian.com; bbcafrique.com and bbcurdu.com.
The guides are based on knowledge and experience built up by more than 75 years of BBC World Service broadcasting. They are based on the ethics which underpin the BBC values which include accuracy, impartiality, objectivity, fairness and editorial independence.
The guides give a range of advice on the use of language including the use of impartial language, identifying “loaded” words and how to unify new terminology and pronunciation. Where relevant the guides instruct on nuances of language when broadcasting to two or more countries with the same language.
Editor of BBC College of Journalism, Kevin Marsh, said: “This is the college’s most exciting project to date.
“The guides draw on the rich experience and expertise of BBC journalists built up over many years, and we are delighted to be able to share this knowledge, in six languages, with journalists across the world. The guides underline how, in the end, journalism is all about language. In order to discuss the values of journalism, one must first understand the role language plays in expressing those values.”