Serving professional journalism since 1912

Magazine of the Chartered Institute of Journalists

Journalists urge PRs to ‘get wise’ to Press card situation


Tuesday 12th March : Release time immediate

The Chartered Institute of Journalists is asking exhibition and conference press office organisers to ‘get wise’ to the structure of journalism and press cards by appreciating there is more than one guarantee of professional bona fides.

“Time after time we get instances of exhibition and conference PRs stipulating possession of a NUJ card as evidence for accreditation but that is only one of at least four Press cards that vouch for the holder’s standing. Sometimes it leads to arguments and time wasting as organisers who do not know the situation in our profession – or worse, ‘jobsworths’ who can’t appreciate the invalidity of their instructions – decline to accept evidence in the shape of these other cards,” Dominic Cooper, general secretary of the CIoJ said.

“The Chartered Institute is the senior professional body in journalism and is governed by a Royal Charter that stipulates the conduct of our members. As many of our members are specialist journalists with a germane interest in the subject covered by the event, these ‘little local difficulties’ created by people ignorant of the true situation are annoying and, sometimes, counter productive,” he said.

The CIoJ’s Professional Practices Board (PPB) has written to Trevor Foley, Chief Executive Association of Event Organisers, asking him to point out to its members the variety of credentials in a bid to make life easier for all parties. PPB chairman, Robin Morgan, said: “It is surprising how many exhibition and conference web sites refer to just one card whereas ours and the National Newsgathers Card are just as valid. It is time for these PR and marketing people to get wise to the true situation and not create avoidable misunderstandings. We hope our gentle approach will do the trick.”


Press contact:Dominic Cooper, tel. 020 7252 1187, email

Chartered Institute of Journalists, 2 Dock Offices, Surrey Quays Road, London SE16 2XU. Website

Notes for Editors:

Formed in 1884, the Chartered Institute of Journalists (CIoJ) is the world’s oldest established professional body for journalists, and a representative voice of media and communications professionals throughout the UK and the Commonwealth.