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Journalism & Communication
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You Can’t Be Neutral on a Moving…Screen Your Name Your University Abstract We have lived with the myth of neutrality and professional journalism for so long that we believe it, and proclaim it, when we know that it is not only untrue—but it isn’t even what we want…

Introduction

The only difference today is that the cyberjournalist answers directly to their audience, rather than to a publisher who traditionally held journalists responsible for reporting ethically. Yet, there is no consensus among publishers as to what is ethical. In the end, ethics are the responsibility of the cyberjournalist and the audience. You Can’t Be Neutral on a Moving…Screen The original phrase, from a book by Howard Zinn, was “You Can’t Be Neutral on a Moving Train.” Cyberjournalism is like a high-speed rail that moves so fast and is so personal that it isn’t possible to be neutral. The bigger question is whether we should even try, in spite of the fact that western society often assumes that all journalists are bound to neutrality when, nearly a century ago, Henry Luce, founder of Time magazine insisted that very concept objectivity was foolish (Ward, 2006). He contended that the public needed the media to explain and interpret the impact of events on their lives. Yet, we insist that it is true and to be expected of the press, regardless of medium. With the speed of cyberspace, it is difficult, if not impossible to be neutral. By the time the 1960’s arrived, Americans had become distrustful of such clarifications on their behalf adding a twist to Luce’s view: that no one can be objective. They public wanted to see the bare facts and decide for themselves what they meant (Ward). ...
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