Category Archives: Fairness

Criticizing Journalists Responsibly

Criticizing journalists responsibly: Don’t make it personal, writes Philip Eil.

“In all cases, stick to the work, not the person,” he writes. Journalists are perfectionists. If your goal is to cause emotional pain, pointing to flaws in their work is often more upsetting than a personal attack.

It’s “a good time for a refresher for citizens on what constitutes a healthy, constructive conversation about the work we produce,” Eil writes.

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How Rape Is Covered By News Media

How rape is covered by news media: News reflects rape culture, or local norms toward sexual assault, writes Meg Dalton.

“Rape culture is difficult to measure,” she writes, “but there are a few common characteristics like victim blaming, implying victim consent, questioning victim credibility and empathy for the alleged perpetrator.”

 

Medill Spotlights Local News Collapse

Medill spotlights local news collapse: As newsroom jobs disappear, writes Mark Jacob, some areas of the country are virtually uncovered by journalism and plagues all news consumers with more superficiality and mistakes.

“Which means there’s plenty to read and view, but it might not tell us very much,” he writes on the local news crisis as part of the Local News Initiative at Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism.

Rage And The Media

Rage and the media: There is some merit to Trump’s claim that the media contributed to the current climate of fear and anger, writes Matt Lewis.

“Tell the truth, but in a way that is responsible,” he writes. “Eschew things that are salacious or done simply to gin up excitement. Exercise restraint and forbearance. The onus is on us to police ourselves. With great power comes great responsibility.”

 

Ethics Of Publishing Mugshots

Ethics of publishing mugshots: Is it preying on human suffering? Corey Hutchins reports that mugshots are a staple for some local newsrooms, while others avoid them.

“Some of those accused said they lost jobs and housing or relocated because they couldn’t find work,” writes Hutchins. Outcome of the cases often unknown.

Right To Be Forgotten

Cleveland.com is exploring allowing people to request that their names be removed from stories about minor crimes they committed, writes Sydney Smith.

“Typically, news outlets do not unpublish — or hit delete — on historical stories,” writes Smith. Names would be removed from older stories if court records in their case were expunged. Use of mug shots will be greatly curtailed.

 

The Many Names Of Marijuana

The many names of marijuana: Caren Lissner writes that “as more journalists cover the (legalized marijuana) industry, worth billions of dollars, many have had to scrutinize the synonyms and slang they use — often at the urging of merchants.”

Sellers say the word “marijuana” has a dark history, while “pot” is objectionable and “weed” is too informal for a substance with medical applications.

YouTube A Conspiracy Ecosystem

YouTube a conspiracy ecosystem: Craig Timberg and Drew Harwell write about wild conspiracies that flood YouTube.

“Among the most popular genres in the collection were related to mass shootings, and especially the one in Las Vegas in October that killed 58 people,” they write. “Typically these portrayed the attacks as politically motivated hoaxes, so called ‘false flags’ intended to dupe the public into believing that gun rights needed to be curtailed.” The 50 most widely viewed mass-shooting conspiracy videos were viewed 50 million times.

 

Media Trust Down, Can Be Restored For Some

Media trust down, can be restored for some: Gallup and the Knight Foundation release new findings.

“These results indicate that attempts to restore trust in the media among most Americans may be fruitful, particularly if those efforts are aimed at improving accuracy, enhancing transparency and reducing bias,” they report.

About one-third of those on the political right have lost faith in the media and expect that to be permanent.