Evaluating Ethics

Story by Lyndsay Frehner

Morals help to guide lives and ethical decisions.   In a recent lecture for the Introduction to Newswriting class, Jim Fisher, a professor in the Department of Communication, informed students on ethics and journalism.
“Ethics is a process of making decisions,” said Fisher.  When people get together to make decisions, the process is a continual circle of deciding which morals and ethics will get the best results.  Once that choice is made, the next step is to evaluate where to go with that decision.
Ethics help to govern the decisions that are made.  Student Kylee Mecham said, “I like the way he could show both sides of the story.  He makes you evaluate the whole situation by going full circle.”
As a part of the lecture, Fisher illustrated an anecdote about ethical journalism.  Journalism is full of interesting choices for reporting the news.  Fisher also stated, “If you aren’t accountable, then you aren’t doing journalism.”
To report the news, one must seek out the relevant information and account for it.  There will be a decision to post a fact or not depending upon the importance of the fact.  Pertaining to releasing the relevant facts, Fisher told students, “Everyone is willing to let things go until there is a victim involved.”
As the lecture drew to a close, student Megan Hulet said, “I liked the way he wasn’t afraid to lay out the way it is.”  Every situation that needs resolution depends on the ethics and morals that govern behavior; especially in journalism. (251)