Below is a list of typical questions
asked to the Ethics AdviceLine:
ethical to make an appointment to interview an arsonist
sought by police, without informing police in advance of
Is lack of
proper attribution plagiarism?
unpaid newspaper columnist run for public office?
reporter write a story about a local priest who
confessed to a sex crime if it will cost the newspaper
readers and advertisers who are sympathetic to the
journalist compromised by wearing a patriotic symbol
like an American flag, and are news managers justified
in banning such symbols?
newspaper editor forbid his staff from dating news
acceptable to publish a photo of friends grieving after
an 18-year-old drowned after falling from a bridge
appropriate to accept or reject an ad political in
nature, since readers might think the newspaper is
promoting the position taken in the ad?
ethical for a reporter to write a news piece on the same
topic on which he or she has written an opinion piece in
the same paper?
Is it a
conflict of interest for the publisher of a newspaper to
be elected president of the local chamber of commerce?
circumstances do you identify a person who was arrested
as a relative of a public figure, such as a local sports
offered free news stories about any company that bought
the newspaper's advertising package. Is that ethical?
has a partisan political bumper sticker on his vehicle,
which he uses while working. Is that ethical?
journalists and photographers accept cash to write
about, or take photos of, events with the promise of
attempting to get their work on the AP or other news
outlets, from which they also will be paid. Is that
journalist reveal a source of information after
guaranteeing confidentiality if the source proves to be
ethical for a journalist to maintain a weblog for
expressing personal opinions?
ethical to eat free food provided for journalists while
covering a story?
pressured by management to become involved in community
service. Does this destroy the barrier between editorial
and business operations?
wants a reporter to turn over a list of telephone
numbers for news contacts to the advertising department
for fund-raising purposes. Is that ethical?
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