AT&T Issue Briefs

Our issue briefs provide additional details on topics identified as most important by our stakeholders. View all the issue briefs on the Reporting Library for a comprehensive overview or choose an issue in the drop-down menu.

 


Stakeholder Engagement Topics
Media pluralism, ethics & integrity


Stakeholder Engagement Topics
Media pluralism, ethics & integrity

 

 

Our Position

 

Our commitment to responsible journalism and media guides our business. We work to create and report on content that resonates with all people, informs and inspires them to connect with the world, and shows how a more inclusive society benefits individuals and businesses.


 

 

Our Action

Media plays a critical role in society. The industry can empower citizens with a spectrum of views from which to make informed decisions. We believe it’s important that people have an opportunity for their voice or perspective to be represented in the content we create and stories we report on. We achieve this by producing and enabling access to diverse and purposeful content – creating media that’s inclusive and accurately represents our world – and by helping ensure producers and journalists have the freedom to pursue stories creatively and to deliver the facts responsibly.

Media Pluralism
We understand the opportunity for media to deepen the public conversation on important issues and subjects. Through initiatives like AT&T Presents: Untold Stories, WarnerMedia 1 1 In May 2021, we entered into an agreement to combine our WarnerMedia segment, subject to certain exceptions, with a subsidiary of Discovery, Inc. The transaction is subject to approval by Discovery shareholders and customary closing conditions, including receipt of regulatory approvals. OneFifty, and AT&T and WarnerMedia’s joint support of Ghetto Film School’s Film Credits challenge, we’re developing content differently by curating untold narratives, investing in artists with authentic voices and incubating messages that resonate with and represent diverse, global audiences.

It is essential that our content and creative partners reflect the diversity of our society and the world around us. WarnerMedia issued the media industry’s first Production Diversity & Inclusion Policy in 2018, with the goal to include greater numbers of women, people of color, members of the LGBTQ+ community, those with disabilities and other often underrepresented groups in front of and behind the camera.

We have pledged to use our best efforts to ensure that diverse actors and crew members are considered for film, television and other projects, and to work with directors and producers to promote greater diversity and inclusion in our industry. For more information about our initiatives to create content that reflects the diversity of the world around us, see the Our Workforce and Responsible Supply Chain issue briefs.

We also support young, diverse filmmakers with grants and training for media careers. Through initiatives such as the AT&T Media Fellowship, FACIUNI, WarnerMedia Institute for Future Leaders and Warner Bros. First Cut, students learn directly from our media professionals with tours, shadowing and presentations – as well as through educational sessions with industry experts working in the field. Learn more in our Building Digital Skills issue brief.

WarnerMedia’s CEO oversees content creation and presents to the Board of Directors on related topics including media pluralism.

Responsible Media Content
Our approach to product responsibility includes the content we create. We have depiction policies that govern aspects of feature films such as tobacco use, particularly for content of interest to younger audiences. For example, guided by consumer warnings from groups such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, American Medical Association and American Lung Association, WarnerMedia discontinued advertising from tobacco and e cigarette companies on our basic cable channels, such as TNT and TBS. Our paid television services, including AT&T TV, AT&T TV NOW, AT&T WATCHTV, U-verse, DIRECTV and HBO Max – which we launched in May 2020 – also provide parental controls to help ensure viewers are watching programs appropriate for their age and maturity. 2 2 In February 2021, we agreed to contribute our North America video business – including DIRECTV, AT&T TV and U-verse – to form a new company with TPG Capital. The transaction is pending customary closing conditions.

AT&T also strives to use our platforms to increase awareness of important causes. Through WarnerMedia and its advertising unit, Xandr, we donate airtime to qualifying non-profit and government organizations for public service announcements. Our initiative, It’s OK, encourages conversations around mental health issues. On select HBO episodes, bumpers let viewers know whether mental health issues are depicted and list resources that can facilitate conversations for those seeking help.

As part of our commitment to digital safety and well-being, we’re also working to help prevent bullying before it starts. Through our Cartoon Network Stop Bullying: Speak Up campaign in the U.S. and Buddy Network campaign in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, we’re inspiring kids to promote acceptance and kindness by offering strategies to help everyone feel included.

For more information on how AT&T helps our customers use our products and services in a safe and responsible manner, see our Responsible Use of Products & Services issue brief.

Journalistic Ethics & Integrity

Our commitment to responsible, fair and accurate journalism guides our news business. At CNN, we practice and defend the highest principles of journalistic integrity and ethical standards. In our news coverage, our journalists present the story fairly and completely so readers and viewers can make informed decisions. This commitment reflects one of our core company values – to embrace freedom – which we apply to press, speech and beliefs. The Executive Vice President of Standards and Practices at CNN Worldwide is responsible for ensuring reporting is fair and accurate, and reports directly to the President of CNN Worldwide, who is also the Chairman of WarnerMedia News and Sports.

Our reporters, producers, writers and editors work to confirm the facts before publishing articles on CNN digital or airing stories on CNN television. Fairness, integrity, diversity and accuracy are of the utmost importance to the CNN brand, and systems are in place to maintain them. Producers and editors thoroughly review stories, and those involving particularly sensitive topics are further reviewed by a team of senior editors, standards and practices executives, and attorneys before broadcast or publishing. In all cases, we hold our journalists to the highest standards of ethics, accuracy and integrity.

Responsible and ethical journalism means that the CNN editorial staff maintains full editorial decision-making for any segments or programs that our advertisers sponsor. Our journalists also report on and scrutinize our advertisers, other business partners and our parent company as they would for any other company.

For more information, visit WarnerMedia Journalistic Integrity.