I believe that too many journalists today believe that the news belongs to them and not the public. The digital age has made it easier for the public to get a hold of all the news out there today through the Internet. Through the digital age, especially with Twitter, new gets shared and the story can become twisted fast. People have to be careful and wonder what is actually true. We have to determine whether news is reliable by looking for evidence of its credibility.
Much has changed about journalism in this day and age. We have advertising based economic underpinnings of the profession and have weakened substantially which will likely decline. In the 20th Century journalism was about telling the truth -- the simplest, yet most complicated part of journalism.
Although this aspect has stayed the same, there is much that has changed about journalism over the years as well. This article talks about how the digital age has changed journalism from typewriters to Twitter. It also makes references from pay phones to cell phones and makes camera comparisons. It is interesting to see how things can change rapidly over time.
This blog post describes how print journalism is dying and how we will eventually have just the online medium. It also describes how email has changed the way we communicate and how much cheaper digital is than print.
Throughout all these changes journalists have tried to keep some things the same. The core ethics codes have been updated for the digital world, but they are still in place. These include: Seek truth and report it as fully as possible, be transparent and engage community as an end, rather than as a means.
The principles from 1991 were: Seek truth and report it as fully as possible, act independently and minimize harm.
I think in today’s day and age we have more codes in place to protect the public and work together with them, instead of ganging up on them as many journalists did in the past. Journalists try to make an ongoing effort to understand the needs of the community and allow members of the community to communicate to one another. They allow and encourage members of the community to self-inform.
This makes journalism a continuing dialogue where everybody in the community can be informed and help inform each other about what is going on.
We try to minimize harm as much as we can toward the public. “Minimizing harm is a promise to act in the interests of informing a community and upholding democracy, acknowledging that the community itself has a substantial ability to contribute to the conversation. By elevating respect for the community, we note that journalistic decisions cannot be made into a vacuum. Instead, these values guide us toward an ethnic of diversity.”
Most journalists are attempting to minimize harm and are trying to generally work with the community and the common good. In today’s society it is harder to minimize harm when people who are not journalists can publish on blogs or tweet information that misinform the public.