Objectivity in Journalism
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Journalists enjoy unprecedented freedom from government interference to gather facts from sources, but journalistic tradition and custom restrict the freedom of journalists to report fact as they see it. This study critically examines the concept of objectivity and proposes an alternative philosophy for encouraging ethical behavior. The first section of the article focuses on the ideological and occupational origins of objectivity and identifies the conflict between these two perspectives Next, the study reviews contemporary literature in regard to objectivity, showing how the concept has evolved, and why objectivity as a journalistic norm needs reevaluation.
Gilles Gauthier ( Université Laval ) If thought is to go far enough, the imagination must go further. If the will is to accomplish enough, it must imagine more.
CBS News ‘s Bob Schieffer is the classic American establishment TV journalist: unfailingly deferential to the politically powerful personalities who parade before him, and religiously devoted to what he considers his own “objectivity,” which ostensibly requires that he never let his personal opinions affect or be revealed by his journalism. Watch how thoroughly and even proudly he dispenses with both of those traits when interviewing Ron Paul last Sunday on Face the Nation regarding Paul’s foreign policy views.
by This page has been accessed since 29 May 1996. The oft-stated and highly desired goal of modern journalism is objectivity, the detached and unprejudiced gathering and dissemination of news and information.
DAVID BROOKS There is some dispute about whether objectivity can really exist. How do we know the truth? Well, I’m not a relativist on the subject. I think there is truth out there and that objectivity is like virtue; it's the thing you always fall short of, but the thing you always strive toward. And by the way, I think that opinion journalists have to be objective just as much as straight reporters. Opinion journalists, too, have to be able to see reality wholly and truly.