The Trust Project is an international consortium of 200 news organizations building standards of transparency and working with technology platforms to affirm and amplify journalism’s commitment to accuracy, inclusion, and fairness so that the public can make informed news choices.

Canada's National Observer became a partner in the Trust Project in March 2020, joining credible news companies such as The Washington Post, the Economist and the Globe and Mail. The group includes top international, regional and local news sites throughout Canada, Asia, Spain and the United States. Those news sites include Frontline news in the U.S., South China Morning Post in Hong Kong, and CTV news in Canada.

Trustworthy news is news that is accurate, accountable and ethically produced. The Trust Project, in collaboration with the public and top news executives around the world, and with the support of big search and social media companies, have defined both public-facing and technical standards for quality journalism that can be easily recognized anywhere.

The eight Trust Indicators address:

  • Best Practices: What are the news outlet’s standards? Who funds the organization? What is its mission? Plus commitments to ethics, diverse voices, accuracy, making corrections and other standards.

  • Journalist Expertise: Who made this? Details about the journalist, including their expertise and other stories they have worked on.

  • Type of Work: What is this? Labels to distinguish opinion, analysis and advertiser (or sponsored) content from news reports.

  • References: What’s the source? For investigative or in-depth stories, access to the sources behind the facts and assertions.

  • Methods: How was it built? And for in-depth stories, information about why reporters chose to pursue a story and how they went about the process.

  • Locally Sourced? Was the reporting done on the scene, with deep knowledge about the local situation or community? Does it tell you know when the story has local origin or expertise.

  • Diverse Voices: What are the newsroom’s efforts and commitments to bringing in diverse perspectives? Readers noticed when certain voices, ethnicities, or political persuasions were missing.

  • Actionable Feedback: Can we participate? A newsroom’s efforts to engage the public’s help in setting coverage priorities, contributing to the reporting process, ensuring accuracy and other areas.

The Trust Indicators are implemented by news sites that go through a rigorous approval and compliance process. The Trust Project is led by Sally Lehrman, a Peabody Award-winning journalist who has been covering science and social issues related to science for many years. The News Leadership Council guides the Trust Project on Trust Indicators and advises on core issues related to information literacy and building trust in journalism.