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Investigative Journalism - Essay Example

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Investigative Journalism

Journalism is also a profession and as such is bound by its own code of ethics and the code of professional conduct. This means all accredited journalists have to follow the strictest guidelines on certain matters such as confidentiality of their sources and how information in their reports was obtained in the first place. Its primary purpose is supposedly to discover or uncover the truth in many diverse areas of public interest such as organized crime syndicates, government corruption or corporate shenanigans of which there are many examples. Investigative journalism serves an important purpose in bringing to light anomalous or unethical practices and policies in either the government or corporate world because it is a form of journalism beyond the usual purview of regulators, the courts or the police system. It aims to correct these wrong practices by making the public aware of them and influencing all those affected to mend their ways and find alternative solutions. This brief paper tries to seek and discuss the importance and drawbacks of this special form of journalism. ...
A journalist who investigates any valid issue has an extremely high level of patience and persistence; it may be months, years or decades before any sufficient information can be gathered from vital sources such as whistle blowers and it takes special courage to dig this deep. The common view is that the general public is largely in favour of investigations that help to expose sordid details of anomalous practices as long as it sticks to the genuine public concerns. Society is better served with investigative journalism when it does not cross those imaginary moral and ethical boundaries into the private lives of people. Critics often cite that media today brandishes investigative journalism as a form of blackmail and how an excessive media power is detrimental to its original lofty purpose. Many areas of public life remained unscrutinised and it is the duty of investigative journalists to shed light on these concerns and bring it to public attention and hopefully, a change for the better. Investigative journalism serves an idealistic purpose as long as it is not affected by the biases and prejudices of the reporter or journalist. Further, it must not be sensationalised that can take away or diminish the significance of its findings. Moreover, the choice of the target of investigation may also determine whether the journalist is merely reporting an unvarnished truth or creating news itself in the process of reporting. Lastly, the most important thing is to maintain the idealism in journalism which is to remain impartial and objective. British forms of investigative journalism are constrained by budgets and partisanship (Burgh, 2005:6). There is always the temptation to resort to ...Show more


Student's Name and Course No.: Professor's Name and University: Investigative Journalism (Individual Right to Privacy) 30 November 2011 (estimated word count = 1,142) Introduction Investigative journalism is a special form of journalism that aims to expose corrupt or anomalous practices in the government or on other matters of intense public interest…
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Investigative Journalism Essay
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