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Code of Ethics Review

When viewing the interactive media ethics situations I found myself stuck in between two possible actions to take.  In the specific case about the Controversial Images, it was hard to decide what route to take.  If I was the parent of these poor high school students, I would not want my child’s dead bloody body being shown all over the news papers.  But when I put it in to the point of view as if I was the journalist/editor, I personally don’t think I could run a gruesome photo that is so personal towards that family.  That is not my business to show that photo. We as journalists can tell a story using either a different photo and/or explaining the incident and what had happened.  I know that not publishing the photograph goes against my job duties, but I don’t think I could publish the photo.  It is morally wrong to me.


Theories of Moral Development

Everyone has a different view when it comes to morals.  The development of morals comes different to each individual. I personally believe that your morals become stronger as you get older and experience life.  I agree with the development stages of the Kohlberg development.  The Preconventional stage is the stage that is ranging from birth to 9 years of age. This is the stage in life when one is introduced to punishments and tries to avoid them, while trying to earn a reward.  The Conventional stage is ranging from 9 years of age to 20.  This is what I would refer to as the self exploring stage. This is when you are trying to figure yourself out and come into realization of your owne personal moral beliefs. You gain approval and avoid disapproval, and then come to learn your duties and introduced to guilts. The Postconventional stage is the age of 20+.  This stage is when you agree on your rights and have come to grasp your personal moral standards.  This is an important stage because these are usually the morals you carry with you throughout your life.  These stages do impact everyone’s life in one way or another, but I do believe that the different impacts of life allow for men and women to act differently on them.  Men have a different focus on life as well as women. 

Political Ad


I decided to go with the political ad that deals with the surviving rape victims from this last election.  The commercial shows a woman telling her personal story about how she is a surviving rape victim and that she use to be a Republican, but because of what Todd Akin said about rape, she is no longer voting for him.  This ad was definitely in favor of Claire McCaskill because of the ignorance that Akin has on the topic such as rape.  The ad makes us feel sympathetic towards the woman who is sharing her survival story and also leaves us second guessing our stance on the situation.  Political Ads to me are a whole bunch of bull.  The opposing party does whatever they can to make the other look bad.  It is a big game to get people to like you and vote for you, no matter how much lying and misleading information is used.  It is all one big game and we all continue to be sucked into it when it comes time to vote.  The ad is very effective because many women can relate to how emotional and traumatizing the survivor must have been feeling while dealing with a rape.  If you are going to be a political figure, you need to carefully select your words and actions when it comes to controversial topics.

Ch. 8-Photo Ethical Test

death of son

This photograph was published in the Washington Post.  It is a Palestinian man throwing his head back in grief holding his dead 11 month old son Ahmad.  This photo created a lot of controversy between countries and the involvement of war.

1. Should this moment be made public?

This is a very personal moment that should be kept private.  This poor man is traumatized by the death of his son and by publishing the photo it allows everyone to be apart of his life.  Not everyone wants to be publicized, especially when it comes to the loss of a loved one.

2. Will being photographed send the subjects into further trauma?

The photo taken of the man holding his baby did resault in many having sympothy for this man and his family. But because of the story that followed it did question the allies and the enemies stance in the war.  It actually made some circumstances a lot worse and had a rather large impact over the whole event.  It could result in more trauma than the man needs.

3. Am I at the least obtrusive distance possible?

Publishing this photo with a story that somewhat demeans the actual story and events is not a good idea.  You need to keep your distance and your own personal opinions out of the stories and coverage.

4. Am I acting with compassion and sensitivity?

The photographer uses an up close shot of the man’s facial expressions.  A close shot gives you the ability to see how the person is feeling at that exact moment in time.  I feel as if this photographer somewhat shows sensitivity because he is only capturing the man holding his loved on close after the death of his son, but at the same time I don’t think that this photo in particular should be seen by the viewers.  It is a personal event in one’s life that should remain within the family.

Ch. 8 Group Photo Discussions

CASE 8-A Daniel Pearl and the Boston Phoenix: Too Much of a Bad Thing?

3. Is there a morally relevant distinction between the tape of Pearl and the 9/11 World Trade Center footage?

There is a difference in the footage taped of Daniel Pearl and the coverage of 9/11.  9/11 was a horrific event that will make a dramatic mark in history.  The coverage and videos shown of 9/11 aren’t of people suffering and being tortured.  There is no reason to show any of the video of Daniel Pearl. Morally you shouldn’t show people being tortured and held captive and watch their lives come to an end.  Yes, 9/11 does allow us to see what happened to many men and women who lost their lives because of a terrorist attack, but the coverage is more of a warning to what happened and what is being done about terrible event.

CASE 8-B Problem Photos and Public Outcry

1. Should the photographer have taken the picture? Justify your answer.

In this case there was a student living in a dorm and had a miscarriage.  The girl had put the baby in a plastic bag along with rubber gloves and a few bloody towels into the dumpster.  The photographer for the student paper was walking by and just so happened to snap a photo.  I feel like this striving student would take a photograph of anything that will get his/her career on the move.  The photo is morally wrong, but I feel like a young newspaper photographer would snap the camera at the horrific event because it allows them to get experience with news stories that aren’t morally right.  Whether it was the school newspaper photographer, or a man walking by on the street, someone would have taken the picture and it would have gotten out some how.  We thrive off of these sick and twisted stories and photographs because it allows us to feel as if we were right there in the action.

CASE 8-C Manipulating Photos: Is It Every Justified?

2. Should Walski have been fired? Why?

I believe that when you are taking photographs you have a duty to fulfill.  Many people look to the photographs to give them proof of what is going on in a certain area, or event.  If you take two photographs and manipulate them into looking like one photo it can change the entire meaning of the photograph.  It creates a whole different illusion of the image and people can get mixed signals.  If you are going to manipulate your photographs and submit them into the paper, then yes you should be fired.  If he was just messing around on Photoshop and just created an image or whatever and had no intentions of submitting them then that’s a whole different story.


Ch. 7 Case- “Bonding” Announcements in the News-Lack of Diversity

Being open minded to new ideas and ways is what I have always been about.  If someone is gay and wants to marry the man/woman of their dreams, by all means go for it!!  We as a society have a hard time accepting people for who they are and tend to make everyone else’s business our own.  I believe that the paper in this circumstance should have accepted the announcement.  We as a whole need to stop being so narrow minded towards people and their sexual preferences and allow everyone to live their life.  The bonding of two people, whether it be gay or straight is an important concept, and if should have been accepted by the paper.  The lack in diversity in our society is continuously brought up and because there are so many people narrow minded and set in their ways.  I feel as if the newspaper should give everyone an equal access to its pages, not just one specific group.  The newspaper doesn’t have to go in to extreme detail on either stories, but just announcing someones special day, there shouldn’t even be a problem with that at all.  This would allow others to see that the newspaper is accepting and open to all people.  Pre-judging and discriminating against an individual because of their sexual preferences is not morally correct.  I understand that religion plays a large role in developing certain beliefs on topics such as gay marriage, but we are also taught to be accepting of all.  If it isn’t harming your life, then I feel as if people should be happy and live their life the way they want to live it.  After all, the key to life is happiness, and by punishing a certain group for having a different view on a topic isn’t morally correct.

In class we talked about how there is a lack in diversity in Media Ownership and I feel as if it needs to change.  Out of the hundreds of media businesses in Chicago only 1 is ran/owned by an African American.  When researching the topic they need to go more into depth with it, not only just interview the few people you see.  There are many things that still need to change in our society today to create a more diverse environment.  If we continue to brush these issues off, we aren’t going to progress like we should be and nothing positive will come from it.

Citizen McCaw-Post 2: The Future of Newspapers

The future of newspapers aren’t looking too hot!!  Yes we need our news and it is important for the community to be aware of news worthy issues, but it is slowly declining.  The news itself is always going to be profitable, but distributing news on newsprint is not.  This is a very strong statement, but because times are constantly changing, we see a the different varieties of how we recieve our news.  Today we have social media sites that are very effective toward reaching its viewers and getting the point across.  The bad thing about this is that newsprint isn’t making much money which results in low profit and causes a problem for printing news material.  Reporting and editing is expensive because it takes a lot of people to guarantee the information is factual, you have to hire and pay people for their information they gathered, you have to spend time and money editing a newspaper and all of it has its own process.  High costs of this process has remained the same, but people aren’t buying printed news as much when they can get all the stories they need for free off of the Internet, Facebook, Twitter, and etc.