Journalists and media organizations are often criticized by politicians, the public, and media scholars for not fulfilling their role in society. This study analyzed 242 codes of ethics in 94 countries to identify journalistic social role as perceived by media organizations. It identified and compared journalistic social roles toward society and toward loci of power, based on each country's geopolitical characteristics and type of media organization. Findings indicated a rather consensual perception of journalistic role around the world and across media organizations: neutral, detached from society and defensive-but not adversary-toward the loci of power. Findings also highlighted the control media organizations have in shaping these roles.