The systematic plagiarism and fabrication of then-New York Times reporter Jayson Blair a decade ago represents one of the most flagrant and grievous breaks in journalistic trust in modern times. It was a black mark against one of the World's flagship newspapers when his deception was revealed, prompting a detailed retraction from the Times and internal restructuring within the organization.
Should a journalist strive most to be fair and objective? Or should his or her primary goal be transparency? Can a content-producer be both an advocate and a journalist? What is the role of the press in the future of democracy and what should its journalistic ethics be?
These are questions news outlets and individual journalists alike must answer as they navigate the future of journalism in the United States, and the topic of discussion during the Second Annual Public Ethics Conference at the University of Missouri-St. Louis on Thursday, November 14.
With the advent of smart phones and tablets, media messages are now ever-present. And with social media, Internet television, satellite radio, blogs and self-publishing in addition to traditional print and broadcasting, the number of media messages out there is also ever-increasing.
That makes it all the more important that people have the ability to critically deconstruct the messages the media convey.
Each year, the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism releases a report about the state of the news media.
The Center’s report for 2013 shows the newspaper industry is down significantly, specifically employment, which is down “30 percent since 2000 and below 40,000 full-time professional employees for the first time since 1978.”