Ethics & Policies

We subscribe to standards of editorial independence adopted by the Institute for Nonprofit News. These high standards help to ensure the integrity of reported news, including a clear distinction between opinion and fact-based content, transparency with respect to contributors, and commitment to covering the entire community.

Editorial Independence

The Newton Beacon’s adherence to the highest editorial standards ensures that all content is free from the influence of the Board of Directors and donors, is non-partisan, and refrains from advocacy on local issues. Above all The Beacon will strive to provide unbiased, politically neutral coverage of the news. The Beacon will not conflate opinions with facts nor play to specific constituencies. The Beacon will be a common source of facts for the entire city.

Donation Policy

The Newton Beacon’s news judgments are made independently, not based on or influenced by donors or any revenue source.  We do not give supporters the rights to assign, review or edit content.

We accept gifts, grants, sponsorships and in-kind donations from individuals, organizations, businesses and foundations to fund our start-up costs and/or operating expenses.   We may also receive funds from government programs offered to non-profit or similar businesses.  As a news nonprofit, we do not accept charitable donations from political parties, elected officials, and candidates running for office. 

We are transparent and will make public the names of all donors and of all revenue sources of more than $999 per year.  Anonymous gifts of any amount may be accepted only by a decision of the Board of Directors and directed to general operating support. We will report annually the percentage of total donations coming from anonymous donors. 

Any donation of any amount may be reviewed by the Board of Directors, and the Board may elect to reject a donation from a source which is deemed to present a conflict with our journalistic independence or to otherwise not be in the best interest of The Beacon.

Diversity and Inclusion Policies

This news organization aims to reflect the rich diversity of the Newton community in its board membership, staff and contributors, as well as its editorial choices and priorities.

Conflict of Interest Policies

The Newton News Foundation, Inc., publisher of The Newton Beacon, has adopted policies to help ensure that the Beacon is free from any interference from or influence by the Foundation’s Board of Directors, donors or any parties other than the news team including the editors and reporters. The Beacon may not engage in activities that benefit or are perceived to benefit the private interest of a member of the Board of Directors or employee. Each Director and employee must give undivided allegiance when making decisions affecting the organization and are not permitted to act in a way that is inconsistent with the purposes of the organization and its nonprofit status.

Any potential conflict of interest by a Director, employee or freelance contributor must be immediately disclosed to the Board of Directors.  Conflicts of interest include any financial relationship between the subject (direct or indirect) of any news article or editorial and a member of the Board of Directors or staff. The Newton News Foundation’s Board of Directors will be responsible for determining whether any activities are in violation of its policies and what actions must be taken to remedy any discrepancies or violations.


No Director of the Newton News Foundation, Inc., employee, or freelance contributor of The Newton Beacon shall accept gifts or favors that could compromise his or her loyalty to The Beacon or the independence of that person.  Any gift (including meals) with a value of $25.00 or more, or gifts with a cumulative value in excess of $50.00 received by a Director or employee in any 12-month period from a single source, is prohibited.  Money (cash or otherwise) in any amount may not be accepted.  

Gifts of any amount may not be accepted in exchange for any actions that compromise the integrity, influence, or could be perceived to influence, The Beacon’s news or editorial coverage.