Spring 2012, Vol. 23, No. 2

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.


Photographs and other illustrations often are digitally altered. Unless otherwise specified, authors and photographers retain all rights to their work, subject only to print and electronic publication by Media Ethics itself.

Some Unanswered Questions About This American Life

By Steve Myers & Craig Silverman

This popular NPR program recently aired an hour-long retraction, but Myers and Silverman point out some important matters about both the original program and the retraction that still need attention.


Photo: Uwe Herman

Case Study: A Washington News Council Hearing

CPB Ombudsman Joel Kaplan wrote two reports about the Washington News Council’s formal hearing on the Vitae Foundation’s complaint against some content in a KUOW interview. Those "before" and "after" the hearing reports are published here, with other information about the use of “media accountability systems.”.



Photo: Jeff Kubina

The New NPR Ethics Handbook

By Bill Knowles

Bill Knowles examines the newly issued National Public Radio Ethics Handbook—a document that both giveth and taketh away but is sorely needed in light of some of the recent ethical mistakes of public broadcasting.


Changes in the Ethic of Television

By Gary Grossman

Television used to be better than it is today—why?  Gary Grossman, with production of more than 9,000 television programs (and some spy thrillers) under his belt, has some strong views on the reasons for this decline and what may be done about it.


Photo: Denis Defreyne

Considering the Ethical Obligations of Presidential Debate Moderators

 By Ryan J. Thomas

The 2012 Republican party presidential candidate selection process entailed nationally broadcast debates. The moderators, who were typically professional journalists, were faced with numerous ethical obligations of their own.

Photo: IowaPolitics.com

The Sandusky Scandal: Penn State Ethics Students Had A Front-Row Seat

By Russell Frank

The case involving a child sex abuse scandal at Penn State University still hasn’t gone to trial,  but the school's journalism students have a major story taking place in their own front yard.


Photo: Terri Ogan

Let's Establish Ethics Codes for Using Twitter in Journalism

By Jerry Lanson

Jerry Lanson points out that getting a story first isn’t as important as getting it right.  It is just as easy to disseminate rumor as fact when relying on near-universal, unedited means of spreading opinion, fact, and opinion-as-fact to the general public.


Photo: xmacex

We Need a First Amendment to the First Amendment

 By Tom Cooper

Tom Cooper suggests that even the First Amendment might need to be amended in order to protect children from violent video games.


Photo: Luke Hayfield Photography

Cultural Diversity and Caution

By Anantha Babbili

Anantha Babbili points out how the world has changed since two airliners deliberately crashed into the World Trade Center towers and another hit the Pentagon on 9/11/01, and many Americans  allowed stereotypes to bias their reactions.  


Photo: Cliff1066

Scholarship on Computer-Mediated Communication Topics in the Journal of Mass Media Ethics

By Peter Joseph Gloviczki

Gloviczki analyzes all such articles dealing with the ethics of something relatively new: computer-mediated communications.


Photo: Terri Ogan

A Tribute to Rushworth Kidder

By Bob Steele

Rush Kidder, prolific journalist and author, left the Christian Science Monitor to found the Institute for Global Ethics in 1990. He died this March—and will be missed.




Photo: Institute for Global Ethics

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