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Editorial guidelines

From the head of digital launched in 2001 as an online companion to the iconic royal and celebrity lifestyle news favourite HELLO! 

It has been my honour to serve as head of digital for the brand since 2016. 

Our talented array of award-winning multimedia journalists live and breathe royal and celebrity lifestyle news and this is reflected in their prodigious output of stories, whether told through words, images, audio or video.

Over the past 20 years we have set the agenda in entertainment publishing with a multitude of memorable stories including exclusive A-list weddings (George Clooney, Brad Pitt and Michelle Keegan among others), incredible baby introductions (such as Brad and Angelina introducing Shiloh, Mike and Zara Tindall introducing Mia) and unrivalled coverage of the biggest royal news moments of our generation. 

We are also a campaigning brand and in 2019 launched #HelloToKindness in response to negative and unkind social media comments. We passionately believe HELLO! should be a safe space for both our celebrities and readers.

It is a privilege to have been entrusted both with the safeguarding and furthering of HELLO!’s prestigious reputation at a time when the digital landscape is continuously evolving.

As market leaders, HELLO! hasn’t reacted to this evolution but has been in its vanguard. Whether through newsletters, podcasts, videos or its app, HELLO! always puts online readers first and ensures its stories can be accessed on their platforms of choice.

Our readers can rest assured that we will continue to evolve and innovate while never losing sight of the core principles that make us so special: positivity, trustworthiness, originality and kindness.

Read on for more details of exactly how we ensure the continuation of this philosophy and the upholding our exacting editorial standards.

Sophie Vokes-Dudgeon

Corrections policy

Editorial accuracy is of the utmost importance and every article goes through a rigorous fact-checking process. We will always correct any errors in an open way and remedial decisions are made in consultation with HELLO! head of digital Sophie Vokes-Dudgeon.

How to query a story

We pride ourselves on being approachable and if any reader has concerns over the accuracy of a story, they have several avenues for getting in touch:

Phone: +44 207 667 8721

Write to the editor: 

HELLO! Magazine, 
Wellington House, 69-71 Upper Ground, 
London SE1 9PQ

Verification, fact checking and sources

HELLO! is implacably committed to providing a safe haven for those seeking to avoid the fake news, unsubstantiated gossip and cruelty that are preponderant online - especially in the entertainment sector. 

If readers land on our website, they can rest assured all stories have been scrupulously fact checked by our qualified journalists.

Our editorial code of conduct is stringent. All journalists and writers worldwide, whether full-time or freelance - sign up to IPSO’s Editors' Code of Practice, and we are committed not only to accuracy, transparency and firm fact checking, but also to our positive and kind approach.

With transparent coverage unnegotiable, HELLO! shies away from using unnamed sources and will never use unverified quotes.

Coverage from other outlets is only ever featured on our platforms if we can stand it up ourselves.

Copy/picture approval

Our commitment to impartiality and integrity extends to our process for copy and picture approval. We do not offer approval on any copy or images unless this is the only way to secure an interview. In these circumstances, approval must have been obtained in advance from our head of digital.

Privacy policy

We work with celebrities not against them and so take the privacy of both them and their families extremely seriously.

We will never publish unpixellated photos of celebrity children under 16 when taken in private moments, and will avoid photographs where the parents were unhappy with the pictures being taken. We will prioritise the use of family photos when taken at public events. We will never reveal details of a celebrity’s pregnancy against their wishes.

While there isn’t a universal ban on speaking to children or publishing what they say, our journalists would only ever do so if given explicit permission by their parents.

Sensitive reporting

HELLO! is unfailingly cognisant of its duty to report on sensitive issues such as suicides, natural deaths and other tragedies with sensitivity and care. We will never glamourise such issues and any upsetting details will be treated delicately, signposting readers to support.

Diversity and equal opportunities policy

HELLO! is a global brand and is committed to reflecting this globality in our staff, writers and interviewees - and the feedback we seek.

We are aware that diversity isn’t a box to tick and then forget. As a sign of our ongoing commitment, in 2021 we launched a diversity apprenticeship programme in collaboration with City University, and in 2022 we launched a diversity and inclusion panel, as well as Editorial Inclusion training for members. 

Further proof of our commitment can be found in the number of women in leadership positions at the company, including our publisher, editor in chief and head of digital.

We don’t see pursuing a diversity policy as being incompatible with equal opportunities and are dedicated to finding the best people to work for our prestigious brand.