Sunday, July 3, 2011

Moral minefields: legal and ethical dilemma

Josephine and Yale gave a rather interesting presentation on this topic. Their presentation focused on the legal and ethical dilemmas of journalists and I was rather intrigued by the case studies that Josephine brought up.

Yale's emphasis on the importance of a journalist's basic legal knowledge in order to stay out of trouble with the law finally made me appreciate the Media Law module that I had taken during a previous semester. Having to memorise all those legal terms and laws then seemed to make more sense to me after I attended their presentation because as Yale mentioned, journalists need to develop a broad understanding of defamation laws in the jurisdiction to stay out of trouble.

Three cases of how journalists have gotten themselves into trouble like becoming a prisoner of war, getting raped and even death because of mishandled legal and ethical dilemmas were brought up by Josephine. It was rather shocking to see the injustice that those journalists had recieved when they were merely doing their best to deliver the truth to audiences or trying to protect their sources.

In my previous entry, I talked about how it is a journalist's job to deliver the truth. However, when these journalist went all out to deliver the truth, they got killed, raped or became prisoners of war. Are these the consequenses of being a good journalist? It is kind of disturbing when you think about it.

I guess the question here is, how far would you go as a journalist to uncover the truths and report the facts even though you know that your investigation might get you into trouble?

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