Media Ethics: Issues and Cases Chapter 2


Micro Issues

  1. Did Laurens do the right thing by sumitting her story without the benefit of an independent investigation into the mayor’s accusations about Councilman Michaels?
  2. Is the mayor correct in arguing that Laurens acted responsible by providing fair and balanced coverage of both sides of a public controversy without trying to judge whose side is right and whose side is wrong?
  3. Is the councilman correct in arguing that Laurens acted irresponsibly by concerning herself only with reporting the facts truthfully and ignoring the truth about the fact?

Midrange Issues

  1. Is it sufficient when covering public controversies to simply report the facts accurately and fairly? Does it matter that fair and accurate reporting of facts night not do justice to the truth about the facts?
  2. Does the practice of objective reporting distance from the substabce of their stories in ways contrary to the ideals of responsible journalism?
  3. If reporters serve as the eyes and ears of their readers, how can they be expected to report more than what they’ve heard?

Macro Issues

  1. What distinguishes fact from truth? For with should journalists accept responsibility?
  2. If journalists know that a fact is not true, do the have an obligation to share tha knowledge with their readers? And if they do share that knowledge, how can they claim to be objective in their reporting?
  3. Justify or reject the role of objectivity in an era when more media outlets are available than ever before.