Journalist entails taking work seriously and recognizing the impact words can have on people and the entire community. Journalists are guided by personal code and ethics with rules and principles that guide the search for information (Edsall, 2005). The sense of ethics helps them determine what to write about others and what to bring out as news settings standards for their performance. When a reporter is caught fabricating sources and making up facts, journalist laws and personal ethics are violated.
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Fabricating and making up facts is a kind of journalist malpractice that shows incompetence and has its roots in self interest. The only new thing in this kind of journalism is that the journalist’s transgression is expressed. It is a kind of malpractice that goes back decades, when people were making stuff up and, therefore, ripping other off what they have achieved (Rawls, 2005). Fabrication interferes with the recipient of the information, because their interests are peddled without their knowledge. When a reported does this, he should be disciplined just like Janet Cooke, a reporter, who was disciplined when her Pulitzer Prize was taken back after it was discovered that the story she carried out included a fictional story of 8-year-old heroin addict (Damien, 2004).
Any fabrication meets up appropriate penalties, because it interferes with public trust and emotions. Journalists are well aware that they are guided by ethical issues which they are constantly reminded of during their working days. As a reporter, they should always ask themselves, if the information they are giving is fair and accurate (Randall, 2000). This brings a new aspect in journalism, because information has changed and these days written evidence can be found anywhere on the internet, even if they are not true. As a result, journalists set up personal principles, which guide their presentation of stories for editing.
Truth is always the first evidence when reporting on a story, and journalists know that second information is not always true and, therefore, no accurate information can be found in stories found from friends or from different people who were involved in the accident. The facts should be found from the source. Fabricating facts hurt journalist ethics and should be mate with consequences (Damien, 2004). Any journalist who does this will be stripped of his duties or demoted depending on the grave matter of actions and stories carried out.
Lobby groups never tire, because they know that their silence will lead to extinction of important specie. They, therefore, continue to routinely present their arguments about killings along with ethical treatment that should be given to the journalists. In other words, the bottom line of what they are fighting for is that the dolphins should better receive better ethical treatment, because this will be equal to enforcing legal rights (Bannon and Collier, 126). In such a circumstance, the activist groups suing journalists in the federal courts may recognize the lobby group’s rights to bring such law suits on behalf of them.
Journalists should know that “a pen is mightier than a double edged sword” according to Edward Bulwer who said the words in 1800’s. He said that words have a powerful impact on people and thus should be handled carefully. In journalism, words are powerful than ever since someone can make statement in some parts of the country and this information will reach another part in a matter of seconds and create even a bigger stir (Randall, 2000). This is even worse when the statement made is malicious, damaging or incorrect. The impact will be immediate and can last for long and this is why journalists must take their work seriously and note the impact they can have on people with their reporting. They should, therefore, be guided by their personal code of ethics, which is a set of principles they have set to guide them in their way of work. This should be taken seriously, because it helps them determine what is fair when they write about others and it will set their own standards of performance. The sense of ethics helps journalists determine what to write about others and what to bring out as news settings standards for their performance. When a reporter is caught fabricating sources and making up facts, journalist laws and personal ethics are violated.
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