Ethically Responsible News Reporting

Essay by knikivegasUniversity, Bachelor'sA, August 2012

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Ethically Responsible and Irresponsible News Reporting

Ethically responsible is a theory that goes with the premise that equality should prevail in society and that society should respect each other's human rights and in return will preserve the dignity and respect of each other and other members of society. Objectivity in reporting also adds to the theory of ethics because objective reporting is a concept that journalists should report without bias and should remain neutral in all circumstances. This way, they are able to bring the actual truth about the condition of society to the forefront of the public's awareness, and expose potential problems of social injustice and initiating actions that would start the process of solving the problems.

News reporting does have an objective reporting side to it initially however ethical agendas often vary. For example, reporters during the Vietnam war made it part of their reporting activities to expose the lies of the Pentagon to the public through their writings and pictorials.

Another example would be the activities of the news reporters during the civil rights movement. However with the increasing commercialization of news agencies and the "profit motive" driving the media into becoming an entity, it would not report against the government with the fear of lock down on operations (David).

Deception in news reporting is only excused as acceptable when it protects national security efforts, assists in the confidentiality of intelligence agendas or used as the most ethical means to inform society in an extreme situation without causing a mass panic. "In 1938, Orson Welles caused a nationwide panic with his broadcast of "War of the Worlds"-a realistic radio dramatization of a Martian invasion of Earth. Welles and his Mercury Theater company decided to update H.G. Wells' 19th-century science fiction novel War of the Worlds for national...