Our Reviews and Ethics Statement

By Jonathan Barnes, 3 years ago
With the site's relaunch, TrueAchievements is entering into a bold new phase of existence. As such, the news team is working on some exciting new projects and will continue to bring you the best coverage possible.

The first thing we'd like to announce is that I (osubluejacket) have been asked to be the site's first Editorial Manager. With this new role, I'll be overseeing many of our official site reviews and working to produce and promote new, original content. We're hoping to bring you more original features like Achievement Preview Spotlights, Community Interviews, Business of Gaming Articles, Opinion Editorials, and more. We have a few other ideas in the pipeline, but if you have an idea for a feature you'd like to see posted or a burning Op-Ed that you think should be brought to the front page, please don't hesitate to send me a message!

One thing that the management team felt was imperative was to create a Reviews and Ethics Statement for our news and front page. After much deliberation and discussion, here are the standards that we aim to uphold:

Rumors and Leaks

We do not publish rumors, substantiated or not, without direct confirmation from a developer or publisher. In the event that a news item is strongly documented (but not confirmed by a developer or publisher) we may publish it with a “RUMOR” tag at the discretion of the News Managers. Furthermore, we will not be running news articles that are wholly based on leaks from unknown or unverifiable sources, or retailers. This may put us "behind" many other sites, but we will always aim to have the whole story before we bring it to the front page.

News Credit

As a community site, we value the members of our community who suggest news items to the Newshound Team. As such, we will always give credit where credit is due. If a story is suggested to our team before it is in the process of writing, we will attach credit. If multiple members of our community suggest the same story before it is being written, a community credit will be added to the story at the bottom of the news post. Credit will not be added if a story is suggested while it is in the process of being written by a member of the news team. Our regular weekly features (like DLC releases, sales, and new releases) and stories surrounding large events like PAX, E3, Gamescom, and the like will not receive credit.

Sourcing

Whenever working with the news resources of another site, TrueAchievements will cite that source at the bottom of the page in the "External Link" section and link to it in the body of the news story. We will not link official press releases due to publisher, developer and/or public relations firm stipulations.

Advertising

Advertising revenue is the main source of revenue for the site. We do not accept money from advertisers or sponsors in exchange for preferential treatment in editorials, reviews, or news coverage. All editorials, news items, and reviews are written and published at the behest of the News Management team, not public relations outlets, developers, and/or publishers.

Contests and Giveaways

From time to time, TrueAchievements will host contests and giveaways for games and gaming-related items. Rules and regulations will always be posted in the details of each giveaway and giveaway items are not to be considered an endorsement from TrueAchievements.

Professionalism

The TrueAchievements' staff will always act professionally when interacting with members of the industry, games media, and public.

Review Copies

TrueAchievements occasionally receives complementary, advanced copies of games from a developer, publisher, or public relations firm. We do not accept copies with pre-conditions as it pertains to review score, site placement, or other preferential treatment. When agreeing to receive pre-release materials, we may agree to an embargo set by the developer, publisher, or public relations firm.

Review Scores

The reviews team at TrueAchievements does not discuss/disclose review scores with publishers, developers, and/or public relations firms prior to posting for the public. Every review published on TrueAchievements will include a statement on how long the reviewer spent with a title, which modes were played, how many achievements were gained, and whether the copy was provided by a publisher, developer, or public relations firm or purchased by the reviewer.

Our scoring system is broken down thusly:

5 Stars - A game that should not be missed. By no means are there "perfect" games, but a 5-star review should be seen as the highest recommendation for play by all audiences.

4 Stars - A very good game. If you are a fan of this type of game, you should definitely look into playing it. While it is an excellent game, there are certain aspects that might keep all audiences from enjoying the experience.

3 Stars - A game that might appeal to fans of the game type/genre. This is a game that can be considered a "take it or leave it". It has merits that gamers will enjoy, but also some rough spots that keep it from scoring higher.

2 Stars - A below average game. These games might appeal to fans of a certain genre, but should be avoided otherwise.

1 Star - Not recommended for purchase or play.

As I said at the outset, this is an exciting time to be a member here on TA. We have one of the best communities on the web and are always trying to do our best to bring you the news, views, and stories that will keep you informed, entertained, and (dare I say?) enlightened.

If you have any questions about our Reviews and Ethics Statement, please don't hesitate to leave us a post in the comments or send me a message!
Jonathan Barnes
Written by Jonathan Barnes
Jonathan has been a news/views contributor since 2010. When he's not writing reviews, features, and opinion pieces, he spends his days working as an informal science educator and his nights as an international man of mystery.