Category Archives: Independence

Morality Clauses

Morality clauses: Writers find them in their contracts, writes Judith Shulevitz, but “immorality is a slippery concept,” like “public disrepute.” The public is fickle in what it takes umbrage at.

“Times change, norms change with them. Morality clauses hand the power to censor to publishers, not the government, so they don’t violate the constitutional right to free speech. But that power is still dangerous.”

 

Ethics Quiz: Journalists In Love

Ethics quiz: A managing editor discovers his city hall reporter is having an affair with the mayor.

If you were the editor, what would you do? The editor called the Ethics AdviceLine for Journalists for help. We’ve been there.

https://ethicsadvicelineforjournalists.org/2015/04/14/conflict-of-interest-the-perils-of-journalists-in-love/

 

Regaining Public Trust In Journalism

Regaining public trust in journalism: “News organizations and journalism educators should teach members of the public (and their own journalists) how to stop being used as pawns in the meta-game of online disinformation,” writes Marie Shanahan.

“One antidote to modern information gamesmanship is more ethics and professional reporting.”

Journalism Entry Points Disappear

Journalism entry points disappear: Digital-media start-up Mic crashes and burns, writes Margaret Sullivan.

“With the tragic demise of local newspapers, places like Mic have become the entry point into the craft for a lot of young journalists,” she writes. “As they go under, such entry points disappear.”

 

Covering Elections

Covering elections: The Reporters Committee For Freedom Of The Press offers an election legal guide.

“Generally, the First Amendment protects journalists’ right to gather news outside of polling places for the purpose of reporting on early election results,” says the exit polling guideline.

 

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.

Youths Best At Telling Fact From Opinion

Youths are best at telling fact from opinion: A Pew Research Center news analysis finds younger Americans are better than elders at separating factual statements in the news from opinion.

“This stronger ability to classify statements regardless of their ideological appeals may well be tied to the fact that younger adults — especially Millennials — are less likely to strongly identify with either political party,” write Jeffrey Gottfried and Elizabeth Greico.

“Younger Americans also are more ‘digitally savvy’ than their elders, a characteristic that is also tied to greater success at classifying news statements.”

 

MAGA Cap Gets Reporter Fired

MAGA cap gets reporter fired: A Minnesota multimedia reporter is fired for wearing a “Make America Great Again” cap while covering a Trump rally, writes Sydney Smith.

NBC-affiliate KTTC news director says staff members are forbidden to cover stories while wearing political campaign attire. The Society of Professional Journalists code of ethics says journalists should act independently and avoid conflicts of interest.

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.