The First Amendment as license and limitation: the Supreme Court addresses principles of journalism ethics (1947-2005) Public Deposited

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  • March 21, 2019
  • Watson, John Clifton
    • Affiliation: Hussman School of Journalism and Media
  • This is a study of the intersection of law and ethics as they address the professional practice of journalism. When the United States Supreme Court had occasion to address journalism's five fundamental ethical principles in cases decided from 1947 through 2005, its rulings were supportive of these principles in general, but not universally so, or in all their particular applications. In some respects, the Court created a legal basis for rendering some principles practical nullities and undermined others so significantly that some ethical prescriptions are perhaps less likely to be followed by professional journalists of the 21st century and beyond. This study identifies the following as the five principles and directives of journalism ethics: tell the truth, respect privacy, report the news, protect sources and maintain independence. This study has found that in some instances, the Court has denigrated journalism's most cherished principles in deference to other ideals the Court has found more important.
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  • In Copyright
  • Walden, Ruth C.
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Open access

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