Guidelines – Overview

Our goal at Secular News Daily is to become the go-to source for news and opinion of interest to the secular-minded. It’s true that we started out as a satirical blog, but we now strive daily to meet a high standard of editorial quality and journalistic integrity.

Here’s what we’re looking for in your article:

Accurate reporting of facts and quotes.

There’s a difference between introducing a perspective into how you write about the facts, and making up, manipulating, or ignoring facts. Keep the facts, and quotes from public figures, accurate.

References (links are good) for the news stories you’re writing about.

We want our readers to know that we’re telling the truth, and give them the chance to look up the reference themselves. We also don’t want to accidentally plagiarize someone else’s work. Include links to original sources of quotes and statements of fact.

It’s not always necessary to provide links to all your sources within the story; most news media don’t provide such links. As an alternative, you can list sources in the back end. Under the article entry box, go to the “Custom Fields” box and select “sources” from the drop-down list. Paste your sources here, then “Add Custom Field”. All your references are now saved in the database along with your article for future reference. Pretty handy, eh?

We don’t do “blogspam”.

“Blogspam” is finding someone’s great content, then writing a sentence on the subject and promoting that article instead of the original great content. Basically, it’s a technique to draw traffic to a site by using someone else’s work as the draw. We don’t do that.

A post that says, “There’s a cool article at ______” is OK once in a while, though we take it a little further. We label such articles “In Brief”, so our readers know it’s only a synopsis. We provide a 100-200 word summary and a link to the item of interest. We don’t actively “promote” the In Brief articles; they go out in the RSS feed, but that’s all.

Please write on subjects appropriate to the site.

That is a pretty broad range; religion and politics are pretty much all-pervasive. You’ll probably know if you’re off-topic.

Please do not make up satirical stories and post them as “News”.

News is news. Humorous fake news is Humor and Satire. Humorous fake news which puts your scintillating and witty words in the mouths of real people must . . . again, must . . . contain a disclaimer that it is satire or otherwise make it clear that the words come from your imagination. (“If I interviewed Barack Obama today, how would he answer these questions? I think he’d say . . .” is one way to handle it.) If you don’t put a disclaimer in, we will, or we simply won’t publish the story. Lawsuits are bad.

Please control vulgarity.

If you’re directly quoting someone, that’s very different from being vulgar yourself. Let’s keep it clean. This is a work-friendly site. Besides, cussing suggests that you have a limited vocabulary.

Please quote the Bible (KJV), Koran, or other Scriptural sources accurately and as needed.

Feel free to cut and paste from any one of the free online searchable Bibles, like www.biblegateway.com and www.bible.com. Our preferred Bible is the King James Version (KJV). It’s the official Bible of the Paliban, and all fundamentalist Christians. Real Christians don’t let their friends read NIV!

Have fun!