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Style guide

The following are some general rules for all news articles posted here:

Titles:

  • All titles should be written using sentence case.
  • Titles should be written as a sentence in active voice.
  • Titles should convey an original idea that cannot be replicated easily.

Images:

  • All images should use alt text for vision impaired users.
  • All images must be credited as to the source unless the image is in the public domain.  Where possible, image sources should be linked to when crediting photographer or source.
  • All images should have descriptions where applicable.  Flags and pictograms would be general exception to images requiring descriptions.
  • No images from competing news sources or from commercial image repositories may be used on ParaSport News unless prior arrangement has been made.

Tags, categories, location and featured images:

  • All articles should have at least one tag.  This is important for finding relevant news around the same team, athlete, country, etc.  In some cases, it is worth writing descriptions for tags so that text from the description can be used for other articles.  This is especially important when dealing with athletes, and stock text is preferable.
  • All articles should have a tag for location where relevant.  This includes where athletes come from and where events take place.
  • A category should be used to indicate what sport and what type of article is being published.  There is no exception to this.
  • Featured images should be set, unless there is a software reason preventing one from being set.
  • Google News location should be used when the article has a geographic location associated with it.  This location should be based on where the event takes places.

 

Article text:

  •  All articles should be at least three paragraphs long.  They should follow an inverted pyramid order for reporting.
Most Newsworth Info, Important Details, Other General Info

Most Newsworth Info, Important Details, Other General Info. Image credit: The Air Force Departmental Publishing Office (AFDPO)

 

  • Ideally, news published here should be no more than 48 hours old, unless the facts of the new story did not emerge right away.  In these rare cases, stories may be published up to a month after the event if there was a delay in the news being shared.  The story should ideally explain the delay in reporting.
  • British, American or Australian variants of English spelling can be used.  This should be consistent across the article.  Do not switch from color to colour.
  • Americanism and Britishisms can be used.
  • Job titles should be capitalized only when appearing next to the name.  For example, “IPC President Philip Craven spoke to Thomas Bach, the president of the IOC.”
  • When using acronyms, write out the initial phrase the first time unless the acronym is widely used inside the disability sport community.  Put the abbreviation immediately behind it in parentheses.     IPC, NPC and FIFA would not need to be spelled out the first time. For example, CPE should be spelled as “Comite Paralimpico Español (CPE)” the first time it is used.
  • When quotes come from other unique sources and have not been widely distributed, they should be credited in the text.  For example, “In a press release from the Canadian Paralympic, he was quoted as saying” or “According to insidethegames.biz, he said”.
  • Other news publications should have their titles in italics.
  • Double quotation marks should be used for quotes. For example, He said, “I want to win gold for my daughter.”

 

Sport reporting:

  • When the sport involves gendered competition, the gender should always be specified.    This is true, even when the official competition name is gendered in one case, but not the other.  In cases of mixed gendered by rule but not by participation, this is optional.
  • In general, the term soccer should be used when talking about the sport known as football, soccer and association football.  If 5-a-side football, 7-a-side football or powerchair football are being discussed, those official names for the sport should be used instead.  Ambiguity regarding the sport involved should be avoided.  When in doubt, use the name for the category on ParaSport News.

Country reporting:

  • For international competitions, sportspeople from the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland should be described as competing for Great Britain unless they are specifically competing for England, Wales, Northern Ireland or Scotland.  In those cases, that should be specified.  Team UK or United Kingdom should be avoided.
  • Côte d’Ivoire should be used instead of the Ivory Coast.
  • Care should be used to avoid American as a descriptor unless written near the United States to avoid ambiguity.

Analysis and opinion:

  • Analysis and opinion pieces should be first run by the ParaSport News Editor-in-Chief.
  • All new reporters should take care to avoid expressing opinions in pieces until they have permission from the Editor-in-Chief.    New reporters should be focused on writing fact based reporting.
  • All editorials, commentary and opinions should be labeled as such either in the title or in the category.
  • Analysis and opinion pieces should be supported by facts that have been presented on ParaSport News through earlier reporting or because they are presented in the piece.

Disability reporting:

  • Disability should be used instead of disabled.
  • Where relevant, classification should first be used instead of saying the type of disability.  If it is not clear, classification can be explained later in the article.  For example, “Ellie Cole won the S9 100 meter butterfly. People in this class typically have  above the elbow or above the knee amputations.”
  • Able-bodied should be used instead normal when referring to non-physically impaired competitors.
  • Mute should not be used.

Dates and times in reporting:

  • Relative dating should be used where feasible: Yesterday, today, tomorrow, this evening, next week.
  • American style dating should be used: June 1, 2015.  British style dating should not be used.
  • Times should be expressed either by stating the time zone or that the time listed is local time.  For example, “The tournament kicks off tomorrow at 5:00 PM local time.”  or “The tournament kicks off tomorrow at 5:00 PM Central European Time.”

 

Corrections:

  • Accuracy is all important.  For small errors and typos, there is not need to issue a correction.  The error should be fixed and we should move on.  For factual errors or errors in quotation, the error should be left and a highly visible a correction should be published at the top of the article.  Depending on the severity of the error, an updated version of the article may need to be published.  In any such situation, please work with the Editor-in-Chief to resolve these issues.

Conflict of Interests:

  • If a reporter has any conflict of interest, this should be clearly stated in their writer profile that appears on every article the publish.  In some cases, depending on the severity of the conflict of interest, this should appear as additional information near the top of the article.
  • All care should be taken to avoid writing articles where there is a clear conflict of interest.

 

Sources:

  • Respect sources, and double check as to when you should and should not cite them as a source of information.
  • When possible, try to name sources.  This is important for credibility.  If sources cannot be named, have an explanation prepared for the Editor-in-Chief.
  • When dealing with sources, you should tell them whom you are reporting for and where your work may be found.

 

Plagiarism:

  • All care should be taken to avoid plagiarism.  Content should not be republished here directly.  All sources should be fully credited.
  • You may copy text from other articles on ParaSport News without attribution, so long as the text is being used to provide additional background details.  Ideally, reporters should be re-using text from their own articles first.

 

 

Further, the advice for reporting on people with disabilities as suggested by the International Paralympic Committee should be followed.