Troy University Hall School of Journalism & Communication JRN 4425: Multimedia Law
I will expect you to think critically about First Amendment rights as you develop these essays. Three cases will be presented after these instructions.
In the first paragraph, describe the dilemma you have, the situation you are in. In your essays, address the questions posed following the scenario, but make it all flow as though those questions are thoughts you have and know that they must be considered in arriving at a solution to your journalistic dilemma. Do not list the questions within your essay and then answer them individually. You must fully justify the path you choose. In other words, whether you choose a solution that is provided to you within the case scenario or another one you have come up with on your own, you must explain completely why you have made this choice.
Refer to at least two previously decided cases (precedents) as partial support for your decision (each case at least two sources). Remember: The First Amendment is NOT a precedent. Do not start off writing the scenario as it appears in this assignment simply to add words to your essay. You may begin by briefly explaining the dilemma you are facing.
Do your own work. I have caught many students plagiarizing the work of previous students, and it did not end well. Turn-It- In has all papers submitted for this assignment for the past six years in its repository. Please do not plagiarizing.
Specifications: Use this list as your checklist before you submit through Turn-It-In!
____ 900 words (This is a firm minimum and maximum number of words—not one word fewer nor one word more.)
____ 12-pt. Times New Roman, double spaced
____ 1-inch margins on all four sides of page
____ Contact info and name in header on every page
____ Indent paragraphs 1⁄2 inch with NO extra spacing between paragraphs ____ Include page numbers
____ Do not submit PDFs. I cannot correct them.
_____ Include a reference/bibliography section.
Detachment or involvement?
You are a reporter for a large urban daily. The paper plans a major series on poverty. Your editor assigns you to do an in-depth piece on the effects of poverty on children, with special emphasis on what happens when drug addiction becomes part of the story.
You have identified several families willing to be subjects for the story. Three families agree to be photographed — and identified — and you spend four months with them, visiting their homes every day and observing what goes on. You tell them your job is to be an observer — a “fly on the wall” — so you can gather information for this important series.
In one home, you watch as a mother allows her three-year-old daughter to go hungry for 24 hours. You see this same child living in a filthy room, stepping on broken glass and sleeping on a urine-soaked mattress. You know the mother is HIV-positive and you watch as she brushes her daughter’s teeth withthe same toothbrush she uses. You see the mother hit the child with full force. You see the little girl about to bite on an electrical cord. Her plight haunts you.
What do you do to satisfy both your conscience and your responsibilities as a reporter?
To what lengths should you go to get a story?
You are a correspondent for a major television network. Your producers have done a great deal of research about a national grocery chain; they allege that some of its grocery stores are asking employees to participate in unsanitary food-handling practices.
This is an important story. Consumers may get sick if they eat tainted food, you argue, and they have a right to know that a food store is not handling its food in a safe manner. You want to make sure this story airs on national television. You believe that to get good footage you have togo into the store with cameras and film the store’s workers actually engaging in unsafe practices.You need proof.
As the television correspondent, how will you get your story?
Will a negative story be allowed to run in a high school newspaper?
As a high school journalist, you have developed several sources of information about the footballcamp held each year at your school. You hear that brutal hazing is part of athletes’ initiation tothe team. Investigating further, you learn that new players are subject to various humiliations and assaults, sometimes with broomsticks, electrical cords and socks stuffed with tennis balls.
This is a big, important story. Kids are being hurt. You work hard to get your facts right and spend a great deal of effort checking and double-checking your sources. Your newspaper’sadviser supports you and your work. But when you are ready to publish the story in the schoolnewspaper, the principal says you can’t run it unless you make substantial changes. You musteliminate a player’s comments and add a prepared statement from the football coach. The coach also says this is “negative journalism” and wants you to hold the story until after the playoffs.
What do you do?