At the first Social Travel Summit – a gathering of top travel bloggers and key industry professionals – round-table discussions resulted in the creation of a Think Tank Report. An important component of this report is the STS Code of Ethics: standards and ethics for professional travel bloggers.
As professional travel bloggers, we fully adhere to the Social Travel Summit Code Of Ethics:
- We expect to be paid for our work not our opinion.
- We undertake to publish/deliver all content that we have agreed in a professional and timely manner.
- We will not falsely represent our online influence/statistics, or inflate our statistics by buying false readers, followers, fans etc.
- We will not falsely claim an expertise or skill that we do not have.
- Our first loyalty is to our readers for whom our credibility and individuality is crucial.
- Our standards apply not only to our own blog but also to our “brand”, across all social media platforms.
- We only write about experiences and discoveries on trips that we have actually made.
- We only write about our experiences subjectively and all opinions expressed are our own.
- We always clearly label any advertising, advertorials, sponsorships, competitions, product tests or 3rd party reviews, published by us and declare any commercial relationships or associations.
- We respect the copyright and moral rights of others.
As a Publisher
- We expect to work with companies, tourism organizations, public relations & advertisers/marketers, and we expect our readers to both understand and accept the commercial nature of that relationship.
- We will protect the editorial integrity of our content.
- We will always seek to agree clear objectives with commercial partners and make clear any limits of cooperation (Eg. subjects we will not write about or promote).
- Our goal is to ensure that our influence and services are adequately rewarded.
On Trips, Travel, and Support
- We view press trips/blogtrips/fam trips, group or solo trips, as an important and effective way to gather content and research destinations. They are not “perks” but a necessary part of the job.
- We will not let our editorial independence be compromised because a trip is hosted. However…
- We will seek to clarify in advance the expectations on both sides.
- If discrepancies, complications or negative experiences occur in the course of a trip, we undertake to consult first with the host to clarify and, if possible, resolve the situation. In exceptional circumstances, if the situation cannot be resolved, we reserve the right “not to write” about the venue/trip/experience and inform the host of the reasons why.