Move towards transparency raise ethical questionsPosted: February 8, 2012
The Journal Register Company admitted its second incident of plagiarism in three months, last month. Though the Journal Register is receiving some backlash for having two incidents so close together, the Poynter Institute is praising the company’s transparency.
This is a part of a new wave of transparency brought on by the push towards a media-first model.
Craig Silverman of The Poynter Institute pointed out that until very recently, a news company was very unlikely to admit incidents of plagiarism, and the perpetrator was very unlikely to be fired. However, due to the rapid growth of citizen journalism and unaffiliated bloggers, I think more journalists are taking plagiarism seriously.
The revelation of plagiarism at The Journal Register is actually most likely a good thing. It shows that news organizations are taking the cardinal sin of journalism seriously and holding themselves accountable for untruths.
I hope more news organizations start owning up to mistakes. It will help solidify them as important, valid organizations in the web culture of extremes and independent agents.
How do you think about media-first companies should handle incidents of plagiarism?