prof. e.

Mass Communication, [multi]media, methodology and much, much more!

Political Transparency for Journalists?

Posted by prof e on March 22, 2008

Radical transparency is a trendy concept in the world of corporate public relations…but not so much in the world of political reporting…until now. In The Case for Full Disclosure, Time Magazine writer James Poniewozik argues that journalists should put all their cards on the table…let us know who they’re voting for and where they stand on the issues. Instead of pretending to be unbiased, reporters should, “expose the sham of neutrality” and expose the lie that journalists are somehow able to remove themselves from the story. One problem, which Poniewozik freely admits, is that reporters may alienate half of their readers/viewers. And it will be much easier to dismiss a story as biased and unfair if the reporter is on record as a supporter of the opposing candidate/party/position. And what if we find that journalists are predominately Democratic or, more specifically, Obama supporters…would public trust and confidence in journalism and the political process suffer? Transparency will likely come slowly, if at all, to mainstream media which, for now, is using the “sham of neutrality” to differentiate itself from the sometimes rancorous and partisan political reporting found on blogs.

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4 Responses to “Political Transparency for Journalists?”

  1. Kenneth Moses said

    When it comes to politics and journalism I feel that there is a very thin line between them both. I feel as if the article is right. If I’m going to read a journalist blog of magazine I rather they are completely honest with the readers. I rather have them tell us who they are voting for and for what reasoning. In class we also talked about the effects CNN and other news stations can have on us and how they usually side with which whatever party they represent. Also in class we watch a show that was aired on CNN dealing with a comedian and two guys who are republicans. And in this episode they talked about politics and how the comedian should be more serious about the issues and the politics in the world. But to me the comedian always spoke his mind and at least he was honest with who he represented and how he felt about certain issues.

  2. Brittny Thompson said

    Allowing journalists to freely write their position in their articles is something i think that should happen. But, somehow i just dont see it actually becoming something that they are allowed to do. As mentioned in the article if a journalist supports one canadate and not the other, the readers that support the oposing canadate will most likely not read or subscribe to the magazine anymore. Thats a big loss in revenue, and i highly doubt magazines are willing to take that drop in sales.

  3. Rachel Espinoza said

    Like what Brittnay said letting journalists freely right is a good thing but I don’t kow if it will ever happen. Everybody has an opinion and sometimes they can’t handle another persons opinion.

  4. charles cruz said

    Sadly it should be a given that a journalist will have to give up all rights to a personal opinion during their career. As it will suggest that they news they report is not unbiased and can’t be relied on as hard facts. Those that say that reporters should stop pretending to be unbiased may want to consider what would happen if each reporter expressed their personal view points. Each paper and journalist would only show one side of each story and no reader could ever be certain that they are reading the truth. To give biased reports defies everything that newspaper and news reporting stands for.

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