Should journalists cooperate with leakers of government secrets?
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/26/busin … a?src=dayp
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I love leakers, and believe they are needed in a day and age of so much corruption within governments. I would have no problem with journalists working with leakers as long as the leakers remain anonymous. it could be a great relationship and awesome for the people.
As long as the journalist is not stealing the secrets themselves, there is nothing wrong with it. Journalist should discriminate themselves as to whether or not they choose to report info if it will place the nation in harms way. Sometimes journalist serve as a necessary check on gov't power, which the founders understood as a need for a free press. But sometimes they're more interested in getting a scoop, and report info the public shouldn't know about. Either way, that freedom is vital. They just should need to be responsible with how they use it.
This would have to depend on the circumstances. Just as leakers themselves have to make decisions based on how they feel in their heart they should behave as far as revealing information, so, too, should the journalists. Their motives need be pure and based on what they truly believe they should do.
Obviously there are times when they would feel it their absolute duty to refer things on and get a story or stories out to the world at large. Other times they should be aware that by telling the world of something they could put others in danger. Here, they should be VERY careful in their decision making. To co-operate or not to co-operate should always come from their highest motives.
Absolutely yes. If a journalist comes across sensitive information that they feel should be in the public domain there ought be a protocol for them to follow based on a code of ethics. Next step should be an editorial meet up with lawyers present. If from that meeting the editor decides to publish then all well and good.
Ideally there should be no pressure from government! But we don't live in an ideal world.
In the USA you have the 1st amendment which gives a journalist freedom to publish any material they feel ought to be out there. No court can touch them in theory.
In the UK things are a bit different. We've had a case recently involving the Guardian and it's thrown light on the darker side of government. Civil servants - who basically run the show behind the scenes - have been trying to persuade editors not to publish certain stories!!
This is all very British....you can imagine the phone call from Whitehall to the Guardian....hello old chap, with regards to Mr Snowden and his comments...you know....isn't it better to keep the whole sad story under wraps....no need to publish just yet....could cause a rumpus across the pond.....know what I mean?
The Guardian has decided to publish all controversial pieces from now on in New York!! Just to be safe. This is very sad and shows you how we operate in this country.
The state should not interfere with journalism of this nature. End of story.
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