Chptr. 7 Elements of Journalism

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In the Elements of Journalism, Chapter 7 talked about Journalism as a public forum. The example at the beginning of the chapter dealt with Cody Shearer. The incident took place on the show Hardball with Chris Matthews. Her Matthews pressured Kathleen Willey into confessing who it was that threatened her(Cody Shearer). However, Shearer was not the one who threatened Willey. It was all a mistake and now Shearer has to pay the price of an angry public because of a journalist's mistake. I was wondering if this is really journalism? Is it forcing people to say what they don't want to because we want the public to know? And if they are wrong, shouldn't they apologize or let everyone know that it was a mistake?

Matthew's ended up apologizing but not willingly. He did it once Shearer's attorney had gotten invovled.

I think journalism should only be the truth. If something is doubted or not totally true, then people should have the integrity to not go out and publish it. Yes, we want our stories to be the most interesting. Yes, we want our's to get the most publicity. But I feel that the most important thing in journalism is making sure that the facts line up and people aren't getting hurt.

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I agree Andy, what good is news if it isn't true? Of course, this is a lot easier said than done. Let's face it sometimes people lie, sources are unreliable, and facts are left undiscovered. So, while it is best that journalist seek the truth, try not to be too idealistic and think that they will always be able to be 100% accurate and truthful. We are human! (well, maybe not you, but the rest of us are!)

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This page contains a single entry by Andy published on October 10, 2005 6:51 PM.

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