Liz Heron talks about how journalism is different now as opposed to when she first started out in her career due to the internet. News is now way faster and more accessable and everyone can have a say in it. By faster it means timing wise. You can get a news story out in minutes and people have already read it as opposed to when Liz started out and it took her hours to get the news, make a story, turn it in and then nobody could read it until the next day in the morning paper. Due to social media anyone can break their own news and get away with it even though it’s not credible. So now not only does the media have to break news they also have to confirm other news as well as defend their own news if people accuse them of being wrong. This means journalists have to be able to share all documents and recordings just incase it’s accused of being false.
Journalists can use social media to update readers and answer questions as well as get new information. This is a good way to promote discussion and help clarify any problems or a reader might have had with the story. Social media also helps journalists promote different forms of journalism. Instagram can be used to show videos and twitter can be used to promote news and keep continuous updates flowing. Social media can also be used to get ideas for stories.
There are some ethical issues with news gathering on social media. For example you don’t always know what is credible. A lot of people will post pictures that aren’t true which makes news outlets look bad. Like we’ve been told since we were young, “Don’t believe everything you read on the internet.” Also some people do not want to see sensitive topic on their news feed so you have to be careful and give warnings about what you post. You wouldn’t want a young child or someone sensitive to violence or someone suffering from PTSD to see a violent war video.
Being truthful is one of the most important parts of journalism because everyone reading the article is trusting you to give them factual and accurate information. “If the public doesn’t believe what it’s getting from the news media, there’s not much point to the news business,” said Philip Seib, Nieman Chair and journalism professor. If a journalist is caught fabricating or plagiarizing nobody is going to believe his future stories and it will ruin the reputation of the magazine.
Plagirism can also ruin a career. “Attribution is the difference between research and plagiarism,” said Steven Butry. Not citing your sources can lead to huge problems in the future, you can not just blame sloppiness and hope to get away with it.
Based on what I observed in the movie “Spotlight”, in my opinion, Sacha Pfeiffer showed multiple qualities of being a great journalist. The first reason I feel this way is because she was very kind and understanding to the first person she interviewed. Unlike Rezendes who had a very pushy and agressive style of interviewing people, Sacha was more friendly and comforting. The first man she interviewed was clearly very nervous about the meeting and she handled the interview very well, making him feel comfortable and more relaxed, which is a hard thing to accomplish when you are dealing with such a sensitive subject, such as the sexual abuse of children. I feel like he would have not given her as detailed and descriptive information about his sexual abuse if she had been stone cold and impersonal.
Sacha also showed she was a great journalist when she went to go question on of the priests that was accused of sexually abusing young children, when he gave her somewhat shocking information (immediately admitting guilt and trying to justify his behavior by saying he did not enjoy it) she made sure to try and clarify that what he was saying was true by repeating the question multiple times and making him repeat his answer as well. She also created follow up questions in a fairly quick fashion in the short amount of time she had, even though she was stopped by the priest’s sister before she could really get a lot of answers.
My third reason is that Sacha Pfeiffer kept her work life and home life very seperate. Although she did not accompany her grandmother to mass anymore I do not remember her ever telling her grandmother why not or shaming her grandmother for going. She recognized that this was a touchy subject for Catholics in her area and was respectful while still pursuing information against the Catholic church. I feel like this would be a difficult thing to keep bottled up inside especially after they found out that 6 percent of priests, about 90 in total, were abusing children in their area.
I do not think that Sacha was better than all the reporters, I thought they were all amazing at their job and I thought that Rezentes strategy worked for the people he was interviewing, but over all I favored Sacha the most. If I had to be involved in something like this I would try to be as understanding as she was.