So that we can be clear on this topic from the start and not elaborate on this at a later date; yes, we have a code of ethics because thats an important thing to have.
1. If a particular writer has personal ties to a developer, they won’t be providing any proper critical coverage of their games
Obviously, this shouldn’t really need to go without saying. If its something I feel like it would be good for us to cover, or the writer would like to see covered, then we may give it to another writer. Beyond critical coverage though (i.e. previews & reviews), the relationship is fine; its fine to use the relationship for interviews, or for general features, or anything like that, so long as its disclosed with any opinions.
2. If we receive a game for free, you’ll know about it too.
At the minute, the whole deal with press copies is that people regard them as free games. Which is silly. But nonetheless, it can do you good to know whether or not we’ve bought this game with our own hard cash or been given access for free, or at least, some people maintain that. So that information will be disclosed at the start of a preview or review.
3. No discriminatory or harassing articles or comments or anything.
If you’re looking for somewhere that’s going to ‘not pull any shots’ or ‘take names and kick ass’, you’re at the wrong place. Don’t Be A Pixel is wholeheartedly dedicated to maintaining and furthering the diversity of the gaming community as a whole, and I’m not going to back down on that. By all means disagree with me or the writers, but this is a safe place and I won’t have discrimination or harassment coming from here.
4. The Patreon bag of worms
Oh Patreon, Patreon, Patreon, oh how you’ve confounded and perplexed many sites about how to feel about you. With regards to Don’t Be A Pixel’s Patreon, I’m not going to refuse people that support us coverage just because they support us. By the same coin, I’m not going to fast-track them or anything. Supporting our Patreon means supporting our work, it does not mean bribery.
With regards to any writers having seperate Patreons, so long as I am reassured they are working to the same ethics the site is, then they can feel free to have their campaign; games journalism is not a stable career and I stand behind anyone doing what they can to find stability where they can, so long as it doesn’t compromise their behaviour.
5. Embargoes, PR and corporate relationships
Well, ain’t this one a doozie. For obvious reasons, if we have to keep to certain agreements such as NDAs or embargoes, we have to keep to them; I will try to negotiate to avoid situations that don’t benefit us or you as a reader, but I can’t guarantee that’ll always be possible. I will inform you if we have had our arms tied though on a certain matter, where I can, as I know people like to be informed. From that discussion, as readers, you will have to remember that us maintaining good relations with companies and PR is a necessary part of us being able to continue providing you with as much coverage as we can; while I can try to make things as friendly for you as well, where our hands are tied, they’re tied.
If there is anything else you feel we need to cover, please do say. I am happy to outline our position on any and all matters on this page.