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    ChiroWatch Back-Breaking Report

    Vincent DeMarco's chelation therapy promotion on WIC and Rogers radio

    March 4, 2000

    Christine McPhee, the host of the WIC radio network's The Touch of Health was at the Kulhay Wellness Centre, just a few steps from one of WIC radio's own corporate centres. The two hours was nothing more than a self-promotion on behalf of the centre. It was an info-mercial masquerading as news, or public service.

    Here is just a short verbatim transcript of what was broadcast around the world on at least two RealPlayer site, TALK640 in Toronto and NEWSTALK570 in Kitchener, and on AM radio in major markets around Canada.

    During the broadcast, Christine McPhee (CM) made some statements that are not true about chelation therapy and other things. In a general way, they are typical of today's radio personality, they are not scientists, they are not really journalists. They are pitchmen or pitchwomen. She's in the same category as the likes of Larry King, but not the same class. Both are equally offensive in their dismissal of basic science in favour of mysticism, black magic, and of course herbal and chiropractic care in a wholistic setting. All are offensive to those who expect more from the journalism standards set by Canadian or American broadcasters.

    Here is just a short exerpt of her interview with Vincent DeMarco, the head of the Gold Standard Chelation Clinic, as he appeared on the show. He appeared to share top billing with Katrina Kulhay. The grammar and exact wording is as best we can make out from a clear copy of the radio show. There may be some minor errors in transcription, but as far as we can tell it is accurate:

    CM: We are going to find out something about what's in the blood when somebody does chelation. It's been now legislated here in Ontario.

    THAT IS NOT TRUE! There is no legislation that enables chelation therapy, or approves chelation therapy, and there is no insurance company that pays for it. If any actual, or potential patient is advised that there is legislation that approves it, they are not telling the truth.

    CM: We're going to find out all about that from Dr. Vincent DeMarco and I'm quite excited to be here..... (Addressing Vincent DeMarco) - I know your sister very well. (referring to Carolyn DeMarco)
    VD: I trained at the University of Toronto and specialized in psychiatry to begin with. I had been very interested in the medical aspects of psychiatry, medical illness and psychiatric illness.

    CM: The mind body connection again
    VD: Yes, and so this led me into a study of medical illnesses that present as psychiatric illnesses. And then there was a logical progression from there into looking at nutritional medicine and other forms of treatment to prevent medical illnesses that lead on to depression.

    CM: So, now do you do both?
    VD: Yes, I still have a psychiatric practice, although I am still trying to do more nutritional therapy, orthomolecular psychiatry. But now we've branched out into other preventative treatments such as the chelation therapy.

    The term orthomolecular psychiatry has deep roots in Canada. One of the pioneers was Saskatchewan doctor Abram Hoffer. You name a disease and these folks can treat it. Cancer, retardation, schizophrenia, ADHD, whatever bothers you or you kids.

    When I was in medical school in Detroit back in the late 60s, I was fortunate, or unfortunate to meet a much older general practitioner named Dr. Turkel. He used to come to our fraternity parties with poster presentations and monographs on how he could turn a Downs Syndrome child into a boy or girl genius. The Canadian Pediatric Society doesn't think much of orthomolecular psychiatry, and neither does the rest of the world.

    If I was a trained psychiatrist, I think that I'd stay away from any association with that cult, even if it does have Canadian roots. But then again, Christine McPhee is definitely no stranger to the topic of orthomolecular psychiatry, is she?. )

    CM: Let's get into the chelation therapy. Now for a time, as we know the pioneer which is Paul Cutler started this up here years ago here and then no longer were we allowed to do chelation. Maybe you can give a little overview of that, what happened and now with it being legislated here in Ontario and across Canada, the different Provinces that do have chelation legislation, and maybe you can go over that.

    VD: Well, it has only become approved for use in Ontario for cardiovascular disease or other purposes. It's always been legal in Canada and always been approved heavy metal poisoning. So it is an approved procedure. I think for political reasons it was outlawed from being used for any other reason, even though a doctor may use any treatment he or she chooses as long as he does it safely and carefully. Now, five Provinces now have it approved. British Columbia led the way for many years. And Nova Scotia, and Alberta and Saskatchewan. And I believe Newfoundland has chelation approved as well.

    (Again there is no specific legislation that approves of chelation therapy for cardiovascular disease in Ontario. This is really stretching the truth.)

    CM: What is chelation?
    VD: Chelation is an attempt to remove excess heavy metals from the body. And in the case of cardiovascular disease, to remove calcium from deposits in plaque, or in the valves of the heart. By removing the calcium you can help the blood vessels regain their elasticity, and therefore you can remove symptoms of angina, claudication, which is pain in the legs when you walk. You can help with stroke victims. Anything which blood vessels are damaged or blocked by plaque.

    (There have been no well designed studies that can demonstrate this. There are no double blind studies that have been done in Canada that have ever been completed to show that they relieve symptoms or contribute to longevity or improve the quality of life. The testimonials on the video tape that DeMarco shows in his office and at alternoid health shows are just that, testimonials. Medical doctors are not allowed to use testimonials to promote treatments.)

    CM: Now chelation has sort of a roto-rooter effect through the body, and I hear that they are actually doing studies right now in Hodgkins disease.
    VD: Well there is an idea that it does at roto-rooter effect, but actually it isn't like a plumber coming in with a snake. It's more removing molecules, molecule by molecule, for example getting the calcium out on a molecular basis, not with a wire brush through the blood vessels.

    CM: Hee Hee Hee.

    VD: They are using, there were recent reports that they are using chelation or similar attitudes or similar techniques for removing copper in patients having solid tumours improves their chance of survival dramatically. Conventional medicine is trying to develop a new drug that lowers copper when chelation can do it much more easily, and much more safely.

    (Well now, what in the world is he referring to? What drug, what is more safe. CM failed to challenge him on this)


    CM: (time for a plug) I'm really wanting to find out more about this, this is very interesting. I hope you're finding this very interesting. The Kulhay Wellness Centre, 38 different varieties of doctors, therapists, hands-on treatment segments are going on, and the Gold Standard Chelation therapy. Take a look on the web site www.kulhaywellness.com. Give us a call at 416-961-1900, or visit us at Yonge and St. Clair, right at the corner, suite 607, enjoying all the wonderful hands on treatments as well as the tea ceremony. I'm Christine McPhee with the Touch of Health, 38 wonderful guests. We'll be right back.


    <---Break for the REAL commercials on WIC radio network---->

    CM: Integrative medicine regards any disease potentially reversible. How? Through the miraculous power of our bodies it is able to heal itself. Yes we do need assistance, and perhaps we can find a lot of it here at the Kulhay Wellness Centre and clinic, and the Gold Standard Chelation Clinic. We're here at Yonge and St. Clair, yes there is room for you. We've got metered parking along the side. And you know what, we've got some wonderful, try on, hands on services and therapies, there's ongoing lectures.

    We've got Dr. Vincent DeMarco talking about chelation. So he's already done his lecture, but we're going to find more about that. Today we're going to have also learn about reflexology techniques could be used at home. I want to know how to do it at home, and as well as how to enjoy couple massages.

    We're going to talk more about hands on therapy shortly, but let's get back to Dr. DeMarco.

    CM: Tell me a bit about the mechanics, how chelation therapy works, and again about the value behind it.
    VD: Well, chelation therapy is an intravenous therapy, each session takes about three hours. We infuse a solution of mega vitamins along with an amino acid that acts as a chelating agent.

    CM: Now can I just intervene. What type of assessment would you go before someone has all this? You know before all this takes place, the megadosing and chelation and all this coming into my body for 3 hours, there must be some heavy testing.
    VD: There is very significant testing. Because we are part of an alternative or complementary medicine, we just don't look for problems with the disease that is presented, but we look to the whole body for any kind of illnesses, or preclinical illness.

    So, our assessement actually is the most exclusive and comprehensive in Canada."

    (On what basis does he make this wild claim? If this were the U.K., the Advertising Standards Association would be down on him like a swarm of killer bees. We are not talking about the "Hair Club for Men", or the laser eyeworks here folks. We are talking about a claim by a licensed medical doctor that the clinic that he works in is THE MOST EXCLUSIVE AND COMPREHENSIVE IN CANADA. That's like saying that saying that this clinic or this hospital does the best hernia, or lobotomy procedures. In this particular case, I'd think I'd pass on all three.)

    "It takes two days to do the testing, and then all the data is collected over three weeks. The most important thing for chelation is that the kidneys must be working since the chelating agents and the metals are pass out of the body through the kidneys. So after this assessment is done, and provided that the person is medically qualified, and medically able to stand the treatment, then we institute a series of chelation treatments."
    CM: Is there a lot of lab studies that take place?
    VD: There are at least a hundred different that are undertaken, and also including imaging studies, to study the heart through ultrasound and the blood vessels. We might do cardiograms, and other tests that might be indicated such as bone densities.

    (Well I certainly do hope that someone in that clinic knows how to read an EKG. It was really swell of the good doctor to say that he "might" do a cardiogram. Who in the world is paying for all of these hundred or so tests, and bone densities and ultrasounds?

    And what do the doctors who have to patch these people up several weeks and thousands of dollars later say to OHIP if they are rostered? "Well sorry, but I don't know why you are docking me $5,000 because some yahoo is taking control over my patient's wallet."

    Will they send the clinic a bill or a thank you, but no thank you card? How many doctors agree with this procedure. It sure as hell doesn't sit well with the FTC in the U.S. who sanctioned one of DeMarco's affiliates with major actions last year because of misleading advertising, the ACAM.)

    CM: Very interesting. A lot goes into it before somebody can actually "go here, plug me in".
    VD: We like to inform our clients, so we give them back an entire chart so they can see their results are themselves.

    KK: (Katrina Kulhay chimes in)-- "If I could just interject Christine, one of the most important things that I find with the Gold Standard Chelation Clinic is why should someone go under heart disease, pardon me, heart surgery, when they could go for a more preventive approach that has perhaps better effects? So before you are sliced diced and julienned as I say, (McPhee chortles in the background), I think it's really important that someone looks preventively.

    Why not check out chelation therapy before they have their heart surgery, their angioplasty, or angiogram. This is important to check out first.".

    (What the hell is she talking about here? There are no studies that indicate that chelation does anything for cardiovascular disease. In fact it actually frees-up free radicals when the EDTA is combined with mega vitamins as DeMarco claims. That is not a very good idea, don't you think? I find it offensive that someone who is not allowed to enter the human body beyond an orifice is giving medical advice about an unproven and possibly harmful therapy administered by a psychiatrist, don't you? Recent studies indicate that even people who take large doses of vitamin-C have a much higher incidence of hardening of major arteries leading to the brain. That convincing evidence has obviously not reached the sixth floor of that office on Yonge and St. Clair.)

    CM: For more information on chelation therapy, I'd like to be able to thank you Dr. DeMarco for joining me. The number 416-961-1900. And yes they've got some wonderful comfortable chairs. Let me tell you that it's so important.

    My dad is on his way, and went there early this morning to Niagara Falls, Ontario. So if my dad's driving back, he just went to get chelated. So, that's what he finds really, one that's the seats are too hard and his drive, so I'm really glad that there is someone close by.

    (What does that mean? Is there some hint here that her dad might just be able to find more comfortable chairs closer to home, and avoid all that stress driving to Niagara Falls on the QEW?)

    Evidence against chelation

    • Chelation therapy for coronary heart disease: An overview of all clinical investigations.
      Am Heart J 2000 Jul;140(1):139-41
      Ernst E

      BACKGROUND: Chelation therapy is popular in the United States. The question of whether it does more good than harm remains controversial. AIM: The aim of this systematic review was to summarize all the clinical evidence for or against the effectiveness and efficacy of chelation therapy for coronary heart disease. METHODS: A thorough search strategy was implemented to retrieve all clinical investigations regardless of whether they were controlled or uncontrolled. RESULTS: The most striking finding is the almost total lack of convincing evidence for efficacy. Numerous case reports and case series were found. The majority of these publications seem to indicate that chelation therapy is effective. Only 2 controlled clinical trials were located. They provide no evidence that chelation therapy is efficacious beyond a powerful placebo effect. CONCLUSION: Given the potential of chelation therapy to cause severe adverse effects, this treatment should now be considered obsolete.

    • American College of Cardiology Position Statement There is insufficient scientific evidence to justify the application of chelation therapy for atherosclerosis on a clinical basis. At the present time, therefore, chelation therapy for atherosclerosis should be applied only under an investigation protocol.

    • Saul Green - Quackwatch Chelation therapy is a series of intravenous infusions containing a sythetic amino acid (EDTA) and various other substances. It is approved and effective for hypercalcemia and poisoning by heavy metals such as lead. However, proponents falsely claim it is also effective against atherosclerosis and is a valid alternative to established medical interventions such as coronary bypass surgery. They also claim it neutralizes free radicals and eliminates dangerous metals from the body. These claims are false.

      The problem of free radicals damage is worsened when chelation therapists add Vitamin C to the EDTA infusion mixture. Based on numerous reviews of the world's medical literature, the FDA, National Institutes of Health,National Research Council, California Medical Society, American Medical Association, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, American Heart Association, American College of Physicians, American Academy of Family Practice, American Society for Clinical Pharmacology Therapeutics, American College of Cardiology, and American Osteopathic Association have concluded that chelation doesn't work.

      It is also not risk free -- cases of fatal renal damage and other complications have been reported. Prolonged chelation will deplete serum mineral content. In the absence of demonstrated efficacy, assuming such risks is not justified. One must also consider the significant risks inherent in choosing to forego needed medical treatment in order to pursue an alternative with no therapeutic value.

    • American Heart Association position on chelation The American Heart Association has reviewed the available literature on the use of chelation (E.D.T.A., ethylenediamine tetraacetic acid) in treating arteriosclerotic heart disease. They found no scientific evidence to demonstrate any benefit from this form of therapy.

    • Getting to the Heart of the Matter - A closer look at chelation therapy - The Mayo Clinic - The Mayo Clinic had previously had a full article on line, but for some reason they've pulled it. We've asked them why. "While the risks from chelation therapy are low, there is still no scientific proof of any benefits to cardiac health. And, while chelation is less expensive than other options, it's not cheap. Costs run in the thousands of dollars and typically are not covered by insurance, including Medicare," according to Dr. Gertz.

    • Medical quackery alive and well - The Mayo Clinic had previously had a full article on line, but for some reason they've pulled it. We've asked them why. Medical quackery can threaten both your health and pocketbook. Snake oil salesmen used to tout cures from the back of a horse-drawn wagon; now they use the Internet and sophisticated marketing ploys. But it's still the same: Use people's fears to "make a killing" — sometimes literally — selling worthless medical treatments. Learn how you can avoid falling prey.

      Quackery thrives on vulnerability. In some areas of life, we are all vulnerable. You may be so anxious that hope overwhelms reason. Or you may be simply unsuspecting and be enticed by catchy advertising and convincing personal testimonials.

    • Review: Chelation therapy is ineffective for peripheral arterial occlusive disease - ACP Journal Club, March/April 1998. Intravenous chelation therapy offers no benefit to patients with peripheral arterial occlusive disease. 3 trials found no intergroup differences for patients who received EDTA compared with those who received placebo, and a subgroup analysis from 1 of the trials reported a trend toward greater improvements for patients who received placebo than for those who received EDTA.


    • Canadian MDs remain sceptical as chelation therapy goes mainstream in Saskatchewan
      Murray Oliver - CMAJ 1997;157:750-3 The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Saskatchewan recently agreed to allow physicians to administer chelation therapy. Supporters, relying on anecdotal evidence, say it works wonders in overcoming heart disease, but many physicians remain profoundly sceptical. In Saskatchewan, the college decision has proved popular with patients but has drawn an angry reaction from doctors.

    • Freedom of Choice in Health Care - Fraser Institute Forum Cynthia Ramsay How can provincial medical licensing bodies refuse to acknowledge the benefits of alternative treatments such as chelation therapy on the grounds that they have not been subjected to double-blind tests (or that such tests performed to date have resulted in indeterminate conclusions) while "accepted" practices such as angioplasties and bypass surgery have not undergone such examinations? [Practitioners of chelation therapy are not advocating it as a replacement to surgery but as an option before resorting to surgery, or after surgery has failed. They have asked the colleges to conduct studies but have been refused. As well, with E.D.T.A. being a generic substance, it is not profitable for pharmaceutical companies to conduct extensive testing of chelation therapy. As it stands, there have been more than 3,000 research and clinical papers published on chelation therapy in North America alone and, over the last 20 years, over 1 million people have received chelation therapy worldwide. In the United States, the American College of Advancement in Medicine trains and certifies doctors who wish to practise chelation therapy and it provides guidelines for the safe use of chelation treatment.] Table 1 should indicate why some patients are choosing chelation therapy, even though it is condemned by almost all of the medical licensing bodies in Canada, it is not covered by any provincial health insurance plan, and there is not a lot of rigorously scientific evidence that it actually works (or whether the beneficial results that have been reported are produced by a placebo effect).
      (Ed. This 1995 foray by the ultra-conservative Fraser Institute shows that there are people who believe that the earth is still flat. I don't know how the FI would rethink this position today after the FTC bashed ACAM's claims.)

    Chelation abuse

    • Controversial therapy lures problem doctors to Florida

      Dr. Cristino Enriquez's medical career had hit the skids. He'd served seven months of an 18-month prison sentence for Medicare fraud, and state officials were threatening to revoke his license. Enriquez begged forgiveness in a 1991 letter to Florida's Board of Medicine. He promised to devote his life to ministering to the poor -- and never again to open a private medical practice. The state let the doctor keep his license. Today, Enriquez practices anti-aging medicine at offices in Plantation and Miami, where he mixes chelation therapy with Christian biblical teachings and prayer.

      The Sun-Sentinel documented that 42, or about 28 percent, of 146 Florida doctors who offer chelation therapy in their offices have been sanctioned by the state's medical or osteopathic licensing boards, most in the past decade. Offenses range from shoddy medical care to reckless dispensation of narcotics, state records show.

      Even chelation boosters acknowledge that chelation cannot hope to brush up its reputation without tighter standards to eliminate fringe doctors whose activities give the industry a bad name, and to rid it of those who make exaggerated claims for success.

      Another feud has erupted because chiropractors are opening chelation centers and hiring physicians to supervise the treatments. Some centers are charging as little as $35 a session, about a third of what most chelation doctors charge.

      "Chiropractors are using an M.D. who's a front for them," said Ahner, who has administered chelation treatments for the past 18 years.

      "Some hire an M.D. who has nothing to do, pay him whatever, and he signs off," said Ahner, himself a former chiropractor who is now a medical doctor. Ahner said he also worries that too many doctors not properly trained are landing in the field.

    • California Medical Board Tackles Chelation Therapy Abuse The Health Quality Enforcement Section of the California Attorney General's (AG) Office contends that it prosecutes three or four cases a year involving the use of EDTA chelation therapy (CT) to treat patients for a variety of ailments other than those for which the procedure is approved (ie, "off-label use"). The AG's office states that they always win such cases, but that these cases are expensive to prosecute and require the same battle of expert opinion over and over again. The AG noted that CT is not harmful to patients at the doses usually used, but emphasized that paying for useless therapy is economically harmful, and may cause indirect harm if patients fail to seek effective therapy in lieu of CT. The AG's office asked the Medical Board of California MBC to consider asking for statutory restrictions that would make the off-label use of CT illegal without an FDA Investigative New Drug license. On Feb 4, the MBC debated the merits of creating such a law. Physicians John Renner and Wallace Sampson provided evidence that CT is used to treat more than 84 conditions for which there is no scientific evidence of effectiveness. The California Medical Association submitted a Medical Practice Opinion stating that it is appropriate to limit CT to heavy metal poisoning, hyper-calcemia, digitalis toxicity, and corneal calcium deposits, or as part of a controlled clinical trial under FDA standards.

      Representatives of the American College for Advancement in Medicine, a national organization established primarily to support the off-label use of CT, argued that the procedure was useful, particularly in the treatment of circulatory problems. Julian Whitaker, MD, a highly vocal advocate of CT, claims that the dispute is economic. He says that by diverting 100 patients a year from coronary by-pass surgery he prevents Orange County hospitals from taking in $9 million. He charges $3,000 for 30 treatments. Dozens of patients gave impassioned personal testimonials claiming remarkable improvements or cures due to CT. After a heated debate, the MBC failed to pass a ban on off-label use except for treatment of heart disease of CT by a 9 to 9 vote. A total ban on the off-label use of CT failed by a vote of 6 to 12. A substantial majority agreed to the concept of regulating CT but failing to reach any agreement on specifics, postponed consideration of regulatory language until its next meeting. Observers said that the tense atmosphere did not lend itself to rational decision-making.

    • CHELATION DOCTOR TO PAY $2.15 MILLION IN DAMAGES Houston, Texas physician Mohammed Kakvan was found grossly negligent in the 1992 death of Frank Vecchio, 61, owner of Del Vecchio Foods distribution company. Kakvan treated Vecchio's heart disease with ineffective chelation therapy. Chelation therapy for vascular disease has been condemned by the National Institutes of Health and every scientific medical organization that has reviewed it. [Physician Financial News, February, 1996, p.3]

    • ADMINISTRATIVE LAW JUDGE REVOKES HUGGINS' LICENSE A 71-page report by Administrative Law Judge Nancy Connick provides substantive information on the bogus theories and practices of maverick dentist Hal Huggins, and reveal the harm visited on 8 patients representative of Huggins' treatment protocol. The report reads like a primer on dental quackery. Huggins based his theories on strong personal belief, not on scientific evidence. MS patients formed a substantial portion of his patients. The report say that by 1980, he had treated over 400 MS patients. He blatantly lied, telling some patients he had cured himself of MS when he had never had the disease. Huggins charged each patient $6,000 for his program, plus the cost of the actual dentistry. He treated about 250 patients per year. Huggins also lied when he claimed to have thousands of publications in his library which supported his ideas. He also lied about having done studies himself on the effects of dental amalgam upon health. The report includes critical analyses of studies upon which he relies that purport to show that dental amalgams are unsafe. Huggins also made false representations that root canal therapy was dangerous, which is based upon the dubious writings of George Meinig, DDS, who relied upon the flawed work of Weston Price, DDS, done in the 1920s. Other specious practices included bogus diagnostic procedures and both worthless and hazardous treatment procedures.

      Huggins did inappropriate procedures such as administering EDTA chelation therapy to remove mercury from the body. EDTA binds lead, not mercury, making it useless. His addition of vitamin C to the intravenous solution increased the hazard of the infusion to the kidneys. The reports of what happened to 8 patients are stories of human tragedies.

      Huggins often videoed patients during periods when they were optimistic, using them as testimonials to prove the value of his methods. Reading the details of patient abuse helps put the harm done by quackery into focus. Connock concluded that "Given his steadfast and longstanding commitment to his theories in the face of substantial reasoned evidence to the contrary, it is evident that nothing will stop (him) from practicing the treatments he has developed short of revocation of his license to practice dentistry" which she did on Feb 29. State law allows a one-month period for exceptions to be filed before the Board of Dental Examiners can act on the judge's decision. That period ended on March 29. The board will take up the case at its May 1 meeting. No exceptions had been filed at the time we inquired March 28.

    Codes of Ethics for Journalists

    • Society Professional JournalistsSociety of Professional Journalists Conscientious journalists from all media and specialties strive to serve the public with thoroughness and honesty. Professional integrity is the cornerstone of a journalist's credibility. Members of the Society share a dedication to ethical behavior and adopt this code to declare the Society's principles and standards of practice.
    • Distinguish between advocacy and news reporting. Analysis and commentary should be labeled and not misrepresent fact or context.
    • Distinguish news from advertising and shun hybrids that blur the lines between the two.
    • Avoid conflicts of interest, real or perceived.
    • Remain free of associations and activities that may compromise integrity or damage credibility.
    • Disclose unavoidable conflicts.
    • Deny favored treatment to advertisers and special interests and resist their pressure to influence news coverage.
    • Clarify and explain news coverage and invite dialogue with the public over journalistic conduct.
    • Encourage the public to voice grievances against the news media.
    • Admit mistakes and correct them promptly.
    • Expose unethical practices of journalists and the news media.
    • Abide by the same high standards to which they hold others.
    • Doing Ethics in Journalism bookEthics Handbook - I suggest that every radio talk show host read this.

      "Ethical decision-making is a skill that can be developed by journalists. Doing Ethics in Journalism is the handbook that can help you, as a journalist, learn those skills to make better ethical decisions and to explain those decisions when challenged.

      The handbook contains case studies covering issues such as accuracy and fairness, conflicts of interest, diversity, photojournalism, privacy and source/reporter relationships. Commentary and analysis put the cases in context.

      Also included is a comprehensive survey of more than 300 editors and news directors about ethics and their organizations’' policies and ethical “cultures.” Doing Ethics in Journalism is intended to improve journalism. This one-of-a-kind resource is something no serious journalist should be without.

    • RTNDA - Code of Ethics - Radio and Television News Directors' Association This is a rather short list that includes these statements:
    • They will clearly label opinion and commentary.
    • They will guard against using audio or video material in a way that deceives the audience.
    • They will evaluate information solely on its merits as news, rejecting sensationalism or misleading emphasis in any form
    • Strive to present the source or nature of broadcast news material in a way that is balanced, accurate and fair.
    • Strive to conduct themselves in a manner that protects them from conflicts of interest, real or perceived. They will decline gifts or favors which would influence or appear to influence their judgments.
    • CAB Code of Ethics - CBSC - Canadian Broadcast Standards Council The purpose of this Code of Ethics is to document the realization by proprietors and managers of broadcasting stations, that, as an integral part in the media of communications of this nation, their first responsibility is to the radio listeners and television viewers of Canada for the dissemination of information and news, the supply of a variety of entertainment programming to meet the various tastes of listeners, and the necessity for ethical business standards in dealing with advertisers and their agencies. Each broadcaster is responsible for the programming of the licensed station
    • File complaints with the CBSC - if you don't believe that a news show is really a news show. If you feel that an infomercial or paid advertisement is being pawned off as a news or interview show you have the right and the responsibility to complaint."All of our Council decisions are available to the public and we announce each of them to the media. If the broadcaster has breached any of the codes, it must make a public announcement during prime time television hours or peak radio listening hours. If the Council decides that the broadcaster has met the standards set out in the codes, it will explain why it has reached that decision."
    • IJNET - Quebec Professional Code of Ethics for JournalistsThis is the first professional Code of Ethics created for all Quebec journalists. Discussed at the 1994-96 annual meetings of the Fédération professionnelle des journalistes du Québec (FPJQ), the Code was formally adopted at the FPJQ's general assembly on November 24, 1996.

      In Quebec It's the Law

      When journalists disseminate information, they should not be influenced by their sources; in addition, they must refuse to disseminate information in exchange for advertising for their news organizations or for any other benefit.

      There must a clear separation
      between information and publicity.

      Journalists must not write info-mercials.

      If they are obliged to do so, they never sign them.

      Info-mercials must be clearly identified so they are not in any way confused - even by their lay-out - with information.

      Journalists must cover events sponsored by their own media with the same rigour they apply to every other event. In all cases, journalists must judge the pertinence of their stories by their merit, public interest, and any other available information.
    • Journalists must put their facts and opinions in their proper context so they are understandable, without exaggerating or diminishing their scope.
    • Headlines and introductions of articles and news reports should not exaggerate or lead to misinterpretation.
    • Journalists should not seek sources' approval before publishing or broadcasting their stories.
    • Whether monetary or not, journalists must avoid situations that could create a conflict of interest, or that could even have the appearance of a conflict of interest.

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