A Comparative Study of Journalistic Ethics
1.Introduction In the past, people used to rely heavily on the traditional mainstream media when obtaining information.As a result, the newspaper world boomed and developed extensively during the 70s .
With rapid development of Internet journalism by the end of the twentieth century , visual convergence of media has become more pronounced . Hence, the printed newspaper industry diminished sharply with only 14circulations left in 2011 .
Such a scenario could be explained further by Hall’s estimation that people living in the developed world incline to get news from the Internet rather than buying hard copies in the twenty-first century . A continuous expansion on network journalism would gradually out-bid the mainstream printed newspaper industry as online attainment of information has become increasingly predominant . Yet, persistent erosion in circulation on Print was foreseeable. Take the Washington Post Company as an example, with growing online competition, 7. % of profit fell was reported in its printed newspaper division last year. For each dollar added to online revenue, the WaPo lost five dollars on print. Shrinkage of the print sector revealed the importance of a diversified structure in the purpose of offsetting the tremendous lost in print and meeting the ever-changing market demand . A similar logic also works within the local media press. In response to the keen competition, Next Media Limited keeps diversifying its business by introducing the Apple Action News (our targeted media channel) chiefly to absorb the new generation.
According to the statistical data from the Hong Kong Audit Bureau of Circulations Ltd. , the founding of the Apple Action News has raised company’s profit by 4. 8% from 2006 to 2008. To take a more in-depth analysis about this scenario, the following paragraphs would focus on explaining how the proliferation of technologies influences the print newspaper in term of new production process and reporters’ professionalism. 2. Methodology The objective of this research was to investigate the Journalistic Ethics between Apple Daily and Apple Action News.
The study is based on an A1 printed newspaper namely “??????? ???? ”and its animated version called “??????? ???? ” dated 22nd April,2011. As the whole study is only based on the 2 media texts, the issue of how Journalistic Professionalism has changed with the Internet might not be thoroughly reflected; therefore, some relevant reading materials were located from the internet, printed books and online journals to make the research more comprehensive. The findings mainly divided into 2 sections whereas each section could be partition into 2 parts.
As for the analysis, the first part demonstrated a discussion with the major differences between Apple Daily and Apple Action News in the process of news production; followed by the part on the major differences between the new media and traditional news in terms of journalistic ethic and professional standards. It is found that the professional standard of the targeted texts are more or less the same, there are only slight variations in some criteria. In the discussion section, emphasis is put on the pros and cons of the new news media and the future development of news media respectively.
The positive and negative influences of news media would be discussed in a macroscopic manner. With thrives in technological development, new news media has brought a remarkable breakthrough to the development of journalism. It is expected that gradual and piecemeal changes will be coming up in purpose of extending market share. 3. Analysis 3. 1 Process of News Production Generally speaking, the production of news operates through multiple tasks of meaning-making. News gathering is the initial stage of the news fabrication process.
It is followed by a series of procedures like putting information into message, graphic editing, as well as publishing. With reference to both the A1 newspaper headlined “??????? ???? ” from Apple Daily and “??????? ???? ” from Apple Action News dated 22nd April,2011 , the issue of how the process of news production has changed with the Internet will be discussed further. Figure 2 The traditional news process 3. 1. 1 News Gathering Gatekeeping Journalism primarily looked at gatekeepers as selectors or human information filters.
Shoemaker defined gatekeeping as “the process by which billions of messages that are available in the world were being cut down and transforming into hundreds of messages that reach a given person on a given day” . Nevertheless, gatekeeping occurs at all levels of the media structure. It ranges from reporter’s decision on sources selection to editor’s decision on which story to be covered or printed; media outlet owners or even advertisers are sometimes involved in process of decision making. The production of printed newspaper involves fewer gatekeepers when compared with the production of mediated news.
At the very beginning, journalist of both the printed section and the animated department would go through similar procedures. Soon after the release of “warning letter” by OMD, journalists would gather comments from different parties concerned such as Miss Mak Yin Ting, the Chairperson of the Hong Kong Journalists Association (HKJA) and the Legislative councilors Emily Lau Wai-Hing were both interviewed. While the journalist was preparing the draft, the graphic designer would enrich the story by choosing relevant photos. In our case, it is the picture with Dr. Raymond Ch’ien Kuo Fung and Sir Chung Kong Chow.
As time went on, the draft has already gone through major procedures involving different gatekeepers, i. e. the journalists and the graphic designers etc. As for animated news version, it is noted that there will be a few more gatekeepers. Animators, script writers and dubbing artists would work in accordance with different occasions. In our case, the script writers would write the script and handover to the dubbing artists to voice over the story. Then, the animator would be responsible for the video formatting. He /She made use of different multimedia special effects to edit the news in order to make news more interesting and attractive.
For instance, past MTR advertisements was inserted as background or analog sound was used to report the MTRC poster.Agenda-setting McCombs and Shaw (1972) have explored the Agenda-setting effect that the news media, by display of news, determine what people think about. Through the day-by-day selection of news stories and decisions about how to interpret these stories, newsmakers provide us about what are the important issues of the day . From the above examples, the following paragraphs will focus on how the Agenda-setting affecting our perspective. On 22nd April,2011, with reference to the suggested click through rate (????? , “????? ?????? ” which is a C1 news was placed at the top of the agenda. However, “??????? ???? ” was placed at the A1 on the Apple Daily printed version. Obviously, there is a complete different Agenda-setting between the two. The animated news tends to select entertainment news whereas political news was selected in the printed version. For most media organizations, especially those market-oriented, newsmakers would consider what their readers can accept or have interest to know about when selecting and interpreting the news . Back to our topic, difference in target readers of the online news and printed news indeed matters.
The newsmaker understands that the seriousness of the issue in A1, the direct relation to one’s daily life are concerns of the newspaper reader, that is why the newsmakers select the “??????? ???? ” in the A1. On the contrary, the readers of animated news may be fond of more relaxed, juicy, entertaining news while surfing the net during leisure time. The situation can be revealed from table of top ten highest click rate (??? ) in April , majority of the news listed is sensational such as “?????? ??! ” ranked first with about 443466 clicks, “????!???????? ”came fifth with 297366 clicks and “????????? ranked the eighth with 286133 clicks. It can be seen that Internet users tend to read exciting and spicy news. That is why entertainment news about Suen Xing drug abuse was placed on top of the on-line news agenda to attract more on-line readers. In short, with reference to different target readers, newsmakers will have a different Agenda-setting. Notwithstanding, the sense of Agenda-setting will directly affect readers’ cognition of “newsworthy items”. 3. 1. 2News writing Framing Framing allows journalists to emphasize some aspects they want and downplay other aspects by selection, elaboration and exclusion .
To determine whether new technology would shed a light in process of framing; the following will demonstrate an assessment with respect to five criteria, 1) language implication, 2) interviewee’s identity, 3) interviewee’s quote, 4) tone of presentation and 5) headline implication. 1. Language implication In terms of language implication, it is obvious that both the printed version and the animated version have attempted to use subjective phrases and negative wordings. It may be explained by journalists’ strong intention to devalue as well as to shape a negative image on MTRC.
Yet, there are many ways to tell the same story. A single word can change meaning a lot. An extract from the animated version reads “???????? ,?????????? ”, the choice of biased words functioned to gain attention whereas Printed News of plain languages or mild wordings presented the same message as “OMD???????? ,???????? ”. In short, new technology implies a stronger meanings or higher levels of subjectivity with regard to langue use. 2. Interviewee identities Concerning the interviewee’s identities, both the targeted media texts selected mainly negative comments or opinions from different parties concerned.
None of the comments extracted was Pro-MTRC. It is believed that journalists tend to seek one’s assent in dissatisfying with the immoral behaviours of the MTRC; journalists made good use of the interviewees’ testimonial through upholding the authoritative comments in motivating their readers. For example, the targeted texts have selected the criticisms like“???????????? ” and “????????? (MTRC) ?????????????????! ” from Miss Mak Yin-ting, the Chairperson of HKJA, who is convincing to public and eligible to typify the journalists as a whole.
It is found that animated news seemed to present the more negative image towards MTRC than that of the printed newspaper. It may be explained by time limits in online news; the journalists downplayed some aspects by selection, elaboration and exclusion in order to show the readers the key points and let readers grasp the main ideas within a short period of time . Hence, it is considered to be natural that the animated version did not show any interviews on behalf of government or MTRC. However, printed newspaper did incorporate more extensive comments providing readers a thoughtful understanding towards the reporting issue.
The newspaper journalists could have begun the story on the front page and carrying over to one or more inside pages which involves readers” jumping pages”. 3. Interviewee quotes As for interviewee quote, similar logic is also practiced. The slight difference is noted by more quotations are shown in newspaper. As both journalists were upholding a strong negative message that parties concerned were totally disappointed with what MTRC did. Hence, they mainly quoted interviewees’ negative comment. These quotations functioned to solidify the message about MTRC’s immoral act.
Apart from the journalist comments and remarks from the Chairperson of HKJA and media veteran Mr. Ng Chi-sum, journalist in newspaper also quoted interviewee’s negative comment on government as well. For example “????????????? ,?????? …” from Miss Mak Yin-ting. The journalists attempted to emphasize the irresponsibility of the government, which did not report in the animated news. 4. Tone of presentation For the tone of presentation, newspaper mainly criticizes the MTRC through plain languages whereas the animated news mainly presented the news verbally with the voice over. The story was reported like story-telling.
Reporter’s judgment was obviously shown in the animated news. The tone used, thereby, of critic may belong to stronger reporters’ feelings and emotions. The sentences “?!????????? ,???????? ,?????! ” from the Script of Apple Action News revealed more identification with the reporter’s stance than that of the printed ones. 5. Headline implication “??????? ???? ”and “??????? ???? ” both acted on a negative implication on the MTRC. Negative words “???? ” was used in both headlines to describing MTRC’s misbehaviors, journalists tends to framed their readers’ mind by fostering the message that “MTRC was conscienceless”. Typically, “???? framed with a large font size in the printed newspaper functioned to catch reader attention. This matched with Orson Welles saying “If the headline is big enough, it makes the news big enough. ” In regard to the subheading of the printed newspaper copy, “?? ”, “??? ” and “?????? ” further upheld the above idea and at the same time showed MTRC’s disrespectful towards Journalism. In short, to a small extent, new technology has shed a light in process of framing. Notwithstanding, with reference to the targeted media texts, the language implication and the tone of presentation made certain effects on shaping one’s perception. . 1. 3News editing Editing includes suggestions for sentence structure, word usage, and vocabulary. Examples are given of editing for objectivity, handling wire copy, proofreading, developing stories, and compiling. Other aspects of news editing skills include polishing headlines, typography, makeup, and news judgment . The editing of the news between traditional and online media is different. First of all, animated news has a higher flexibility. Editor needs to decide the typesetting of different news in newspaper by personal experience because previous sales volume cannot show which type of news is reader wanted.
It is difficult to immediately respond to the market demand. In contrast, through the click-through rate of different animated news in the website, editor can predict what type of news, presumably entertainment news, is audience’s favourite. It is found that “??????? ???? ” placed in A1 ranked the third namely “??????? ???? ” in the suggested animated news’ agenda, while “??????????? ” was placed at the top. Hence, new technology allows quicker and direct responses in regard to audience’s taste. In terms of news coverage, editor can make news more interesting and attractive by advancement of technology.
Traditional media can take advantage of multimedia technology to add special effect when reporting the news. In the newspaper, it mainly depends on words with a few photos to depict the image of MTRC in the news. However, animated news are of video format, which allow editor to add lots of special effects, such as inserting MTR advertisements as background while playing the process of interview and analog sound to report the MTRC poster which was spoofed. As a result, advanced technology allows editor to make use of different multimedia special effects to edit the news in order to make news more interesting and attractive.
Yet, newspaper was far more comprehensive than animated news. Because of the consideration of play time, file size, the maximum duration of animated news is around 2 minutes. Therefore shorter, simplified news with more visualized elements is generated on-line. As for the printed newspaper, a more comprehensive reporting is allowed. Thus, advancement of technology may risk oversimplifying the news content. In brief, there is no doubt advanced technology can help editor to typeset the sequence of news to satisfy demand of market.
It can make news become more interesting and attractive for audience to watch. However, it may have certain bad effects on the comprehensiveness of news as the play time limits the range of news content. Concerning the above section, there are some differences between the two targeted media texts. Though they share similar meaning making procedures, more gatekeeper and different agenda setting, more framing as well as more editing are found in the animated news. 3. 2The major differences between the new media and traditional news in terms of ethical/professional standards
While the proliferation of technologies gives rise to the growth of animated news and online TV news, there is growing concern about its impact on journalists’ professionalism. The following paragraphs would demonstrate a discussion on the degree of changes with respect to 5 criteria: 1) Truth, 2) Accuracy, 3) objectivity, 4) Balance, and 5) Fairness. It is discovered that 2 out of 5 criteria for evaluating Journalists’ professionalism listed above have certain degree of changes. They are the accuracy and the fairness. The other criteria are remained more or less the same. 3. 2. Similarities on Journalists’ Professionalism after Introducing Online Platform First, there is little or even no change to the truthfulness of news while news media presentation is changed from print to online media. Similar truthfulness of news issue is found in both print newspaper and online video of Apple Daily . Kovack and Rosenstiel regard truthfulness as the foundation of the sense of security that grows form awareness and as the essence of news . In this sense, journalists are asked to report what someone has said and base on what they have seen, which can be recorded and checked .
Both the animated version and the Printed version have reported the issue about the release of warning letter from OMD highlighting that the letters concerned the right to cancel or reschedule any media insertion when there is any negative reporting in the newspaper publication. Apparently, it is known that both versions are based on the information gathered from OMD and they were being verified accordingly. Therefore, different presentations of news issues do not affect the truthfulness of news. Second, there is no significant difference between the online and print news articles in term of the degree of objectivity.
Both the news articles of Apple Daily, either in print and as video, are presented with great subjectivity. Frost has defined objectivity as the following statement -“it means that the journalists should not let his or her subjective feelings or views intrude into a report”. In other words, one should stands aloof from any decision-making, being neutral and taking neither side . It is found that both online and print versions demonstrated a subjective reporting. Reporters of online and print versions subjectively considered MTR as shameless, revealed by headlines “???????????? on print and “????????????! ” on video. The only difference between them is that the former was written with standard Chinese while the latter was expressed in oral Cantonese. Furthermore, in the print newspaper, the reporters described the letters from OMD as “????? ” in quotation marks and criticized the Hong Kong Government using sentences like “?????????????? ,???????? ,??????????? ”. For the online video, there is sentence of “?????? like?! ” by the voice-over. The editors subjectively decided what the response of MTR Company was.
These show that the reporters has subjectively included their opinions into the news report and tried to make decision for the readers. In general, the subjective opinions of the reporters on print and online platform occupied a similar proportion of the whole content. Although the way of presentation has been changed, it does not affect the degree of objectivity of journalists towards the news events. Third, introducing news article in video version does not change the extent of balance which originally exists in print newspaper.
In case of producing animated news and print newspaper for Apple Daily, reporters were still incapable of balancing the opinions from two sides. How balance to the facts and audiences’ understanding can only be shown to some extent by including both sides of opinions towards the disputes equally in the news articles . For example, while reviewing the same news articles on print newspaper and online video of Apple Daily dated 22nd April 2011, nearly half of the articles were occupied by the negative opinions towards MTR from professionals.
The print news articles mainly included the negative opinions from “??????????? ”, supported by “???????? ” and senior government official. For online video, there are negative opinions from professionals including “??????????? ”, “?????????? ” and “???????? ”. None of the opinion on both the print and online platform showed positive views towards this news issue. However, it is surprised to see that there was no criticism on the Hong Kong Government, who acts as the shareholder of MTR Company, in the animated news of Apple Daily.
Yet, with the fact that video has limited time to include criticism towards the Hong Kong Government when comparing with the relatively unlimited space of a printed publication. 3. 2. 2 Differences on Journalists’ Professionalism after Introducing Online Platform As we have mentioned before, only the accuracy and the fairness in journalists’ professionalism offer changes after the presentation of news articles change from print to online . The accuracy of news article is greatly promoted to a higher level by the technologies. Frost considers accuracy as an important component of information-gathering.
Readers expect that the information they are being fed is properly sourced. Therefore, the journalists must do all he can to minimize mistakes, distortions and untruthfulness . Increasing accuracy can be shown in the news video “???????????? ”. All the opinions from the professionals are quoted with their names, titles and even photos. The opinions are recorded from the interviews and delivered in the online video as conversations. The possibility for making mistakes or misinterpreting their views can be lowered since information is directly uploaded or included in the news articles in video format.
For print newspaper, when compared with online video of the same news article, it shows a lower level of accuracy. Just like the online video, the print news articles has included the names and titles of some professionals – “??????????? ” and “???????? ”. However, photos are not provided. Opinions from interviewees are expressed in written words, which have been put to a process of translation by the reporters. It is difficult for the reader to verify the content of the opinions if they have not listened to the actual conversations.
Although the readers have expected that the information is properly sourced and accurate, there is still higher possibility of selecting or omitting some of the content by the reporters in the print news article. Moreover, speech of an anonymous government official and the spokesperson of Hong Kong Government as shareholder of MTR are given in this print news article. The reporters have not included their names and titles when they are writing the news articles. Therefore, when comparing the overall performance of animated news and print newspaper on accuracy, the animated news has relatively done better than the print one.
Besides, a sharp decrease in fairness is found in new media presentations. “Fairness is the idea that the journalist gives all sides of the argument a fair hearing” . That means the reporters for new media have not given chances to both parties of the conflicts to explain or defend themselves. A sense of fair play can be seen in the same print news article of Apple Daily dated 22nd April 2011. On one hand, the reporters have included the negative opinions against MTR Company and the Hong Kong Government as the shareholder of MTR.
On the another hand, the print news articles also contained the declaration from MTR’s Public Relations Department, stating that their company does not aim to cancel all the advertisements booked in the publication after there are accidents concerning MTR and they always respect the freedom of press. Also, the reporters allowed the spokesperson of Hong Kong Government to defend themselves by saying that the letter has not be mentioned in the Board of Directors of MTR, even the senior government official – “??????????? ” has not read it.
The regular meeting for the Board of Directors of MTR is about the discussion of future planning but not daily operations of MTR. Lastly, the reporters have also called the editor of Ming Bao “??? ” to explain more on the cause of this issue. On the contrary, the animated news only contains the criticisms against MTR Company. They do not give any opportunity for the accused party to defend and response to those negative judgments. It may be explained by the limited capacity available in the animated news. In this sense, additional information or counter-argument are omitted in order to save capacity for main content.
However, this would lead to an unfair situation to one side of party. To sum up, the journalists’ professionalism generally remains more or less the same after new media presentation is introduced, such as online TV news and animated news. Although some of the components of professional standards do have variations with the new media presentation – increased accuracy and decreased fairness, there is not much change in the overall performance of journalists when executing their professionalism in news production process. 4. Discussion and Suggestions 4. Pros and Cons of the emergence of the news media In the media corporations’ point of view under market-driven journalism, single-copy sale of newspaper only count for a small proportion of revenue, which mainly relies on advertising. Commercials are more willing to advertise on Internet nowadays . While advertisers assess the effect of various existing medium, print media becomes less competitive when comparing to online media. The emergence of online media could be an alternative way to attract more advertising revenue. In this contemporary era, society emphasizes “multimedia and digitalization”.
The younger generations rely more on imageries than words, hence, has a higher acceptance in pictures. Inevitably, 3D animations that the new media introduced can help audiences in understanding the whole sequence of events, especially when it comes to sudden accidents or injuries. Animations can describe and visualize the whole process of incidents; let audiences become the witnesses. The news can be more clearly reported by reproducing the pictures which are impossible to be filmed . That’s why modern audiences would also find animated news reporting more entertaining.
The emergence of new news media is indivisible with the development of technology. Internet allows audiences to obtain the latest news instantly and ubiquitously. According to Jason Seiken, editor of washingtonpost. com at the time, “we put it up immediately. Any time there was any sort of update that went up immediately” . Reporters would update the latest news on web as soon as possible right after the incident happened. As well, as a characteristic of Internet, new news media has a high mobility that audiences can read the news anywhere and anytime, as long as they can access o Internet. Moreover, as suggested by Seikan , there is a capacity of online media for interactivity. Media corporations make use of the interactivity of Internet enabling a two-way communication. Audiences can express their own point of view about particular news on web. Apart from the news reporting context written by reporters, audiences can also read from other perspectives. News media becomes a sharing platform among audiences. Animated news media no wonder can attract more modern audiences, however, some may doubt the trustworthiness of the designed imageries .
Animators produce realistic imagined videos merely based on a few descriptive sentences which they did not witness. First impression is the strongest. Some audiences may take those animations for granted which is unfair to the victims. This would severely violate journalistic professionalism and cause ethical issues. In this way, animated news has to deal with some obscene topics, for instance, violence and pornography. Since animated news includes images and sounds, everyone, as well for teens and kids, can easily access to it on Internet; its influences should not be neglected.
Besides, different reporters and animators may have different imaginations upon the same reporting. During the process of animation making, more or less would involve in subjective determinations and willingness. To make videos more entertaining, for example, animated news would sedulously sketch the faces of offenders more ugly and fierce. These kinds of manipulation would make the reporting imbalance and lack objectivity. Above and beyond, the emergence of visualization creates a high burden for journalists.
Media corporations as to minimize costs, they require reporters to know various skills; therefore, reporters nowadays are “backpackers”. One has to record videos, take photos and jog notes at the same time. After that, he/she has to type the reporting and post it on web immediately. Reporters are no longer writers who use a pen to write, instead, story tellers who also use audio and visual to express . 4. 2 The future development of news media Less than a decade ago, the rapid growth in technology has surpassed the earlier world in which information propagation was only limited to press newspaper, radio and television .
Nowadays, diverse channels are used to publish news and information. Hence, traditional newspapers facing keen competition may be outbid by the emergence of new news platform. First and foremost, it is important to note that readers no longer want to stay passive in attaining information. As a matter of fact, printed news is a one way delivery; it is less likely for the readers to take part in the news production. However, taking the advantage of quick information transmission, online news stimulates the two-way communication.
Readers can submit information or news stories to the press in assisting the news making. In this way, readers could actively participate in journalism by giving extensive feedbacks to the media outlets . Secondly, animated news with innovative ideas may become the mainstream of the journalism. The emergence of Apple Action-news is a good proof. It has provoked a cut-throat competition in the press market and brought about considerable changes. Other newspaper corporations have attempted to increase their competitiveness by gradually extending their business online.
For instance, Oriental Daily, the direct competitor of Apple Daily, has shortly developed on. cc to absorb the new generation customers as a way to compete with Apple Daily. The reality shows a continuous multimedia trend is existed in the journalism. In the future, because of successful of Apple Action-news or on. cc, numerous of printed newspaper’ companies may be tended to establish online news especially animated news to increase the number of readers. In addition, emphasis on fast pace delivery would the future trend . Even the news delivery now is quicker than past.
But the journalism is not halt in this moment. They will try to solve the technical problem of technology especially the diversity problem of news to accelerate the speed of publishing. This implies that more technology will be employed in news publication to lessen all sorts of locational constraints. To sum up, as the emergence of animated news has provoked a cut-throat competition in the press market and brought about considerable changes. Heavy reliance on technology seems to be a foreseeable trend in the near future. 5. Conclusion
In considering the impact of new technology on the journalistic industry, the news production process and journalistic professionalism would be the key aspects for our investigation. The introduction of new media has brought about changes in every stages of news production. Although animated news are still undergoing similar procedures, more gatekeepers such as animators, script writers and dubbing artists are involved in the new media presentation like video format. Gatekeepers create a new Agenda-setting for the online news which targets the leisure-oriented readers.
Entertainment news, instead of political one, is put at the top of the agenda for the sake of readership. With reference to the framing process in news writing stage, verbal words with stronger meanings are found in the online media text. Generally greater proportion of negative comments is shown in the animated news in relation to the interviewees’ identities and quotes. It may be explained by the limited time available for a comprehensive content. Moreover, the online media text expresses a stronger tone and emotions from the reporters with voice-over which may be seen as an attempt to invite more identification.
Headline for online version are consistent with that in the printed news. Yet, both headlines have acted on a negative implication on the related party – MTRC. In the age of technology advancement, new limitations are imposed in the journalistic industry, which is the limited capacity of animated news. Content are packed within a very short period of time. Particular parts of the news event might be amplified to stress its importance while more perplexities are excluded. The new media affects the framing process to a certain extent, possibly leading to a higher level of subjectivity of reporters.
The journalists may intentionally or unintentionally include more personal opinions or biases in the news articles and exert a greater effect on shaping one’s perception through framing with the new media presentation. This situation may become more difficult under the age of technological advancement. For news editing process, the new media has extended the flexibility of journalism to significant level. Click-through rate are used to help with the prediction of audiences’ favourite, giving a quicker response than ever before.
Editors make use of different multimedia special effects to generate more interesting and attractive news. However, the risk of oversimplifying the news content by the new media remains in doubt. From the above, new media actually contribute to the remarkable change in the news production process. New media presentation has also drawn an impact onto the journalists’ ethical standard. Our research shows that some components of the journalists’ professionalism vary to a certain extent under the new media. The accuracy of the targeted media text is raised to a higher level by advanced technology.
This is because interviews can be directly delivered in the animated news as conversation, avoiding the misinterpretation by the journalists. As for fairness, a sharp decrease is found in the new media presentation. Limited capacity available in the animated news is the main factor for it. Counter-argument are omitted in order to save capacity for the main content, however, resulting in being unfair to one side of the party. Under our examination, the truthfulness of animated news remains the same as the printed one since both online and printed versions are relying on the same source of information.
Also, we note that the degree of objectivity and balance in new media is kept at a similar level as that of the printed newspaper with respect to the proportion occupied by the opinions of either side of the parties. Basically, the journalists are able to keep their overall performance of professional standard to a similar level with new media presentation. The advantages and disadvantages of new media in regard to the journalism is also a hot topic in discussion. The emergence of online media could be an alternative way to attract more advertising revenue.
Also, animation of online news can help audiences in understanding the whole sequence of events by reproducing the pictures which are impossible to be filmed. High mobility of new news media enables the audiences to read the news anywhere and anytime, as long as they can access to Internet. More importantly, interactivity is embodied in the online platform so that sharing is possible among audiences. On one hand, new media offers us a lot of convenience. On the other hand, the trustworthiness of the designed imageries is still in doubt.
The journalists are questioned for not witnessing the reality for their video making. It may result in the severely violation of journalistic professionalism and causing ethical issues. Easy access to the obscene topics like violence and pornography and loose regulation on internet are also a main concern for journalistic ethic. Furthermore, video making is all about subjective determinations and willingness. Exaggerating sketches in animated news would make the reporting imbalance and lack objectivity. Lastly, the emergence of visualization creates a high burden for journalists.
Despite the worries, a continuous multimedia trend is anticipated in the journalistic industry. Readers no longer want to stay passive in attaining information. The two-way communication via internet will enable the readers to actively participate in journalism by leaving feedbacks to the media outlets. Also, animated news with innovative ideas may become the mainstream of the journalism. Increasing attempt in expanding the business of corporations online will be seen in the near future. Besides, more emphasis will be put on the fast pace delivery by then.
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