Journalism

The fundamental principle is flexibility in all other principles

Newspapers Canada, an industry association, states high minded principles.

“A free press is essential to our democratic society. It enables readers to . . . make informed judgments on the issues and ideas of the time.

“The newspaper’s primary obligation is fidelity to the public good. It should pay the costs of gathering the news. Conflicts of interest, real or apparent, should be declared. The newspaper should guard its independence from government, commercial and other interests seeking to subvert content for their own purposes.

“The newspaper keeps faith with readers by presenting information that is accurate, fair, comprehensive, interesting and timely. . .

“However, the operation of a newspaper is a public trust and its overriding responsibility is to the society it serves. The newspaper plays many roles: a watchdog against evil and wrongdoing, an advocate for good works and noble deeds, and an opinion leader for its community. The newspaper should . . . be accessible and accountable to the readers it serves, whether rich or poor, weak or powerful, minority or majority. . . “

The principles listed are noble but, unfortunately, not always observed. Newspapers in North America operate too much with the spirit of once powerful American politician Everett Dirksen,

“I am a man of principle, and one of my basic principles is flexibility.”

In this province, we have seen much flexibility among those who present news, whether in print or by broadcast. This is unfortunate because the precepts listed are vital to preservation of democracy. Our media does not serve as a watchdog against evil nor is it accessible and accountable to those it serves, if they are poor or weak.

Robbie Burns in Stanley Park

My grandfather was proud of quoting Robbie Burns but my youthful ears were closed and I was unappreciative. However, I’ve grown mindful of Burns’ wisdom. This is from his poem “Here’s A Health To Them That’s Awa”

Here’s freedom to them that wad read,
Here’s freedom to them that wad write,

There’s nane ever fear’d that the truth should be heard,
But they whom the truth would indict.

Categories: Journalism

4 replies »

  1. Hi Norm, I am a reader of your blog and I have also noted your comments on several other websites and blogs. I must say always informative and spirited at the least.

    We here in Maple Ridge are starting our recall of Marc Dalton and we would like to link our website http://www.downwithdalton.com with yours and others as well. If you would be so kind enough you can send your link to our site and we of course will appreciate it if you would include our link to your site.

    Thanks in advance.

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  2. As usual Norm your MSM comments are spot on.This leads me to comment on a story which I found in presscore.ca. It's a story which deals with a federal issue but is one that I feel is indicative of how the Canadian MSM deals with issues which are embarrasing to right wing governments. The issue I speak of is the International Criminal Court investigating possible war crimes charges against Stephen Harper and Peter Mckay. This has to do with Richard Colvin's testmony at the Military Police Complaints Commission last year. I never knew about this investigation until I happened across it on facebook. To my knowledge the MSM is treating this the same way they treat BC Rail,that is, ignore and hope it will never become public knowledge in the first place and, if it does, ignore it and hope people will forget all about it. I am convinced, now more than ever, that the Canadian MSM exists for the sole purpose of furthering the interests of the powerful and the elites of this society.

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  3. The catch word seems to be 'disinformation'. Have seen this many times in info relating to issues that they, the politico theives, feed the media to pursuade us to think their way. Have read recently that they use it on themselves as well.
    Who are the 'they' .… those that wish to keep us in the dark, in fear, and thereby keep the masses apathetic.
    Best way to keep control and line their pockets with 'our' gold.

    Like

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