Information for Journalists

The Office of Public Affairs is the principal point of contact for the Department of Justice with the news media.

Hours of Operation

8:30 am – 6:00 pm ET, Monday through Friday

During regular business hours, journalists may contact the Office of Public Affairs at (202) 514-2007 or email Press@usdoj.gov

Access to Media Events

Accredited journalists and technicians who do not hold a long-term “hard” building pass are welcome to attend open press events in the Department.

They will need to present one of the following as identification:

  1. A U.S. Government-issued photo media credential (e.g., White House, Department of Defense, Congress), OR
  2. An official photo identification card issued by their news organization, OR
  3. A letter from their employer on official letterhead verifying their current employment as a journalist.

AND

An official government photo identification (i.e., U.S. driver's license or passport).

Non-hard pass holders wishing to attend an open press event may enter/exit though the visitor's center at 950 Constitution Avenue NW.  They will be cleared through security and issued a temprary escorted pass.  All press will be escorted by Department employees.  The badge must be turned in upon departure.  Additional instructions, including RSVP and camera set-up time, will be available on the media advisory for the event.

Ground Rules for Interviewing Department Officials

Please be advised of these ground rules for all communications and interviews between members of the press and Department of Justice officials.

Ground rules must be agreed upon at the beginning of a conversation or an interview with Department officials. The discussion should proceed only after you and the officials are clear on exactly how the information can be used or attributed.

All statements from officials of the Office of Public Affairs are considered on the record unless otherwise specified. If an official provides information in email under other ground rules and a reporter after receipt of the email does not agree to those ground rules, the information is then considered not useable until the ground rules are agreed upon.

On the Record
Information may be quoted directly and attributed to the official by name and title.

On Background
The official's remarks may be quoted directly or paraphrased and are attributed to a "Justice Department official" or "Administration official," as determined by the official.

On Deep Background
The official cannot be quoted or identified in any manner, not even as "an unnamed source." The information is usually couched in such phrases as "it is understood that" or "it has been learned." The information may be used in the reporting to help present or gain a better understanding of the subject, but the knowledge is that of the reporter not the source.

Off the Record
Nothing of what the journalist is told may be used in the story. The information is meant only for the education of the reporter.

 

Updated August 22, 2017

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