Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Truth or Dare

Chapter 6: The Truth, the whole truth, and nothing but…

The chapter elaborates on the various notions of truth, especially in regards to the practice of journalism and the wider impact the truth in journalism can have on a society.
Exactly how important is truth in journalism. Obviously it is a crucial element in preventing an honest readership but I think in following on with the theme of public interest sometimes the truth can be damaging to an audience. Take for instance this article: http://thegreenman.net.au/mt/archives/000728.html which explains how the newspapers deleted or minimised the effects of a severed bloody limb after bomb attacks in spain. If the paper were to show the "true" photo it could have a lasting or damaging effect on the publications audience which initially is not in the publics intrest. In saying this though, I dont think it is ever easy to give the true representation of a specific event of issue. Journalists need to take it into their own account on whether the truth is best for the situation. Im not saying that they should lie, but merely minimize the effects if it its not valued but society.

I also think universal truth is a task on its own. Firstly, Plato, truths for all people everywhere and for all time, is a nice thought and would be a wonderful achievement, but in our diverse universe I dont think we can make something like that work efficiently. I think journalists should tell the story in the best, objective way, detailing the exact details but without damaging consequences. Censorship should come into play here. Tell the truth about the incedent but dont allow images of indecent acts to corrupt our sponge like brains or younger more innocent counterparts emotive and personlised feelings.

Chapter 7: The importance of enquiry

The text examines and describes to us the three types of enquiry. All three of these are said to be connected to the other with the journalist being caught unable to move on to another level without adequate enquiry at level one. These 3 steps are described as:

1. Reactive reporting: observation, and an account of what happened which is most often brief

2. Analytic reporting: The answers, and the who what when?

3. Reflective reporting: The deeper seated social trends, approached in a way which may have set the scene.

All good journalism requires a continual and ongoing enquiry. Take a look at my blog on Kisschasy. It goes on to explain my enquiry and ongoing research into the band. I used this three step process for a change and to my own disbelief, actually found it to be useful. Journalists need to become envolved within the story so they can potray the best outcome to the society they are representing. Enquiry is the only way this can become successful without the apparition of the story becoming confused. A journalist must as stated above discover the truths of the story and justify them through their own body of special knowledge. Ivestigation is the key here and nothing can appose this as its a tradition and efficient way of researching news stories. All the commercialisation and political governing couldnt change it, even if they wanted to.

No comments: