Media Ethics is independent and inclusive. It is editorially eclectic and neither its sponsors, its editor, or its staff are responsible for its content.  It strives to present and examine ideas, provide a forum for opinion and research articles on media ethics, as well as a venue for announcements and reviews of meetings, opportunities, and publications.  Media Ethics welcomes any and all contributions. All submitted manuscripts are subject to editing at the discretion of the editor.


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Objectivity in an Interconnected World

ycf5wa9sJavier Garcia-Albea




"Objectivity" is both much-revered and much-maligned as a core normative component of U. S. journalism.

John Hulteng's The Messenger's Motives Thirty Years Later

114a1v0wJavier Garcia-AleaBY JAY BLACK

In 1976, when John Hulteng's The Messenger's Motives was published, I was an eager-beaver young professor who had just gotten tenure and was teaching the typical range of courses that are the lot of those in that position: media and society, reporting, editing, and press criticism.

The Imus Affair: Lessons in Media Power, Herd Instinct, and Greed



Journalists specifically, and media people generally, need to periodically reset their moral compasses to offset human tendencies to drift on the sea of ethics. The uproar surrounding Don Imus' stupid-sexist, racist-remark about the Rutgers University women's basketball team offers several lessons and gives media people an opportunity to hone their moral sensitivities.

The "Permissive American": The Amorality of Silence (A brief sound bite aimed at the ethical conscience of us all)

135l156bJavier Garcia-AlbeaBY JOHN C. MERRILL


The Mass Media System is King. At least in America where reality is strained through a distorting image-making information machine. Bowing before this King are politicians, financiers, advertisers, athletes, musicians and actors, book authors, lawyers, academicians, assorted criminals-even presidents and elite leaders from every social sphere.

From All of Us to All of You: The New York Times

3ea196h8Javier Garcia-AlbeaBY RUSSELL FRANK


Among the "action steps" recommended in 2005 by the Commission on the Role of the Press in a Democracy headed by Geneva Overholser was for journalists to "enhance transparency."

How Complete are Newspaper Corrections?: An Analysis of the 2005 "Regret the Error" Compilation


Media blogs increasingly have held traditional news outlets accountable for their errors. One such Web site, "Regret the Error" (, holds media accountable for their corrections. 


Branzburg Revisited: On the Politics of a Federal Shield Law


In 1972, the United States Supreme Court held in Branzburg v. Hayes (408 U.S. 665) that working journalists can be required to testify in federal court regarding illegal activities about which they may have information, even when the journalists have promised their news sources confidentiality.

The Ethics of Reality Television Producers

wx4qjy9wJavire Garcia-AlbeaBY RICHARD CREW

After producing television magazine programs and documentaries for 14 years in Los Angeles, I closed my production company to begin doctoral studies. One year later, Survivor debuted. As the "reality television" fad snowballed, I became curious about the ethical principles producers apply when they create "reality" television.

Real or Not Real? The Digital Game

q8q3c25vLibrary of CongressGARY GUMPERT AND SUSAN DRUCKER

For students of the visual media, Eadweard Muybridge is a well-known figure. His photographs, taken for racing aficionado and governor of California Leland Stanford, proved that all four hooves of a galloping horse are briefly but simultaneously off the ground.

The Moral Nature of Film

6fr26033Pua(the boy of DEAD BIRDS Susan Meiselas (Magnum))



I propose that, in film's very nature, somewhere embedded in its formal attributes as a mediator of the phenomenal world, there arises a capacity for evoking moral responses in those who come in contact with it.

Comment on Robert Gardner's "The Moral Nature of Film"


The primordial fall from a state of grace indicates that we are perpetually immersed in a condition of moral ambiguity. The artist both addresses the predicament and seeks transcendence through image catharsis.

The "Next Generation" 60 Years Later: Civic Journalism as the Offspring of the 1947 Hutchins Commission

g2ny14c4Javier Garcia-AlbeaBY JUDY BULLER

The Hutchins Commission on Freedom of the Press released its report in 1947. During this, its 60th anniversary, it is appropriate to revisit the roots of social responsibility, particularly to examine the forms its descendants have taken.



Ethicalia: A Compendium of Global Ethical Minutiae


spans the globe for "Ethicalia," minutia about media ethics

Publications about Media Ethics in the Journals of NCA and Its Regional Affiliates 1987-2007

This bibliography was compiled by using the terms "media ethics" and "journalism ethics" while searching the ComAbstracts and Communication and Mass Media Index databases for articles published in the 16 journals of the National Communication Association and its regional affiliates for the period January 1, 1987 through February 23, 2007.

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