Last Updated 17 Apr 2020

Social Responsibility Theory

Category Responsibility
Essay type Research
Words 1405 (5 pages)
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Social Responsibility Theory To combat the pressures that threatened freedom of the press, this theory was first introduced in 1947 and was recommended by the Hutchins Commission on Freedom of the Press. It stated that the media should serve the public, and in order to do so, should remain free of government interference. It defined guidelines that the media should follow in order to fulfill its obligation of serving the public. Ethics and the Media

The Social Responsibility Theory claimed that the media could be self-regulating by adhering to the following precepts: • Media has obligations to fulfill to a democratic society in order to preserve freedom. • Media should be self-regulated. • Media should have high standards for professionalism and objectivity, as well as truth and accuracy. • Media should reflect the diversity of the cultures they represent. • The public has a right to expect professional performance. The proponents of this theory had strong faith in the public’s ability to determine right and wrong, and take action to preserve the public good when necessary. ) The social responsibility does not only fall upon the reporters and producers of media. The responsibility also falls to the consumers to become media literate and maintain high, yet reasonable expectations of the media. In theory, if these things happen, there will be no need for government intervention. The Social Responsibility Theory was set forth as the ideal way for the media to conduct business.

Over the years since its introduction, this theory has met with much criticism as well as support. It has become the standard for United States media practices. It has also set the standards for much of the currently accepted media ethics. [pic] [pic]Since the Hutchins Commission produced its famous theory, the United States has developed better educated journalists, seen a reduction in news sensationalism and enjoyed more accuracy in reporting. Many journalists are now also advocates for the public and for social issues and reform, getting heir messages out through the media. Read more at Suite101: What is the Social Responsibility Theory? : Written by the Hutchins Commission on Freedom of the Press http://press-freedom. suite101. com/article. cfm/what_is_the_social_responsibility_theory#ixzz0hYd9u8dH Social responsibility Social responsibility is an ethical or ideological theory that an entity whether it is a government, corporation, organization or individual has a responsibility to society at large.

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This responsibility can be "negative", meaning there is exemption from blame or liability, or it can be "positive," meaning there is a responsibility to act beneficently (proactive stance). Businesses can use ethical decision making to secure their businesses by making decisions that allow for government agencies to minimize their involvement with the corporation. (Kaliski, 2001) For instance if a company is proactive and follows the United States Environmental Protection Agency? EPA) guidelines for emissions on dangerous pollutants and even goes an extra step to get involved in the community and address those concerns that the public might have; they would be less likely to have the EPA investigate them for environmental concerns. “A significant element of current thinking about privacy, however, stresses "self-regulation" rather than market or government mechanisms for protecting personal information” (Swire , 1997) Most rules and regulations are formed due to public outcry, if there is not outcry there often will be limited regulation.

Critics argue that Corporate social responsibility (CSR) distracts from the fundamental economic role of businesses; others argue that it is nothing more than superficial window-dressing; others argue that it is an attempt to pre-empt the role of governments as a watchdog over powerful multinational corporations (Carpenter, Bauer, & Erdogan, 2009). Socially responsible Corporate social responsibility (CSR), also known as corporate responsibility, corporate citizenship, responsible business, sustainable responsible (SRB), or corporate social performance,[1] is a form of corporate self-regulation integrated into a business model.

Ideally, CSR policy would function as a built-in, self-regulating mechanism whereby business would monitor and ensure their adherence to law, ethical standards, and international norms. Business would embrace responsibility for the impact of their activities on the environment, consumers, employees, communities, stockholders and all other members of the public sphere For each business, different measures are taken in consideration to classify a business as "socially responsible".

Each business attempts to reach different goals. There are four areas that should be measured regardless of the outcome needed: Economic function, Quality of life, Social investment and Problem solving. [citation needed] that is trying to be achieved should be measured to see if it meets with the cost guidelines that the business is willing to contribute. [edit] Emerging Normative Status of Social Responsibility

Social responsibility as a non-binding, or soft law principle has received some normative status in relation to private and public corporations in the United Nations Educational, Social and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Universal Declation on Bioethics and Human Rights developed by the UNESCO International Bioethics Committee particularly in relation to child and maternal welfare. (Faunce and Nasu 2009) The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is developing an international standard to provide guidelines for adopting and disseminating social responsibility: ISO 26000 - Social Responsibility.

Due for publication in 2010, this standard will "encourage voluntary commitment to social responsibility and will lead to common guidance on concepts, definitions and methods of evaluation. " (ISO, 2009) The standard describes itself as a guide for dialogue and action, not a constraining or certifiable management standard. Social Responsibility |[pi|Practiced in the US in the 20th century | |c] | |[pi|Purpose is to inform, entertain, sell, but also to raise conflict to the plane of discussion | |c] | | |[pi|Ownership is private | |c] | | The social responsibility theory is an outgrowth of the libertarian theory. However, social responsibility goes beyond "objective" reporting to "interpretive" reporting.

A truthful, complete account of the news is not necessarily enough today, notes the Commission on the Freedom of the Press: "It is no longer enough to report the fact [pic]truthfully. It is now necessary to report the truth about the fact. " Today's complex world often necessitates analysis, explanation, and interpretation. As the Commission stated in 1940: The emerging theory does not deny the rationality of man, although it puts far less confidence in it than the libertarian theory, but it does seem to deny that man is innately motivated to search for truth and to accept it as his guide.

Under the social responsibility theory, man is viewed not so much irrational as lethargic. He is capable of using his reason but he is loath to do so. If man is to remain free, he must live by reason instead of passively accepting what he sees, hears, and feels. Therefore, the more alert elements of the community must goad him into the exercise of his reason. Without such goading man is not likely to be moved to seek truth. The languor which keeps him from using his gift of reason extends to all public discussion.

Man's aim is not to find truth but to satisfy his immediate needs and desires. It is the press, therefore, that must be the "more alert element" and keep the public informed, for an informed populace is the cornerstone of democracy. Today's large media conglomerates, however, may not function naturally as a public forum, where all ideas are shared and available. "The owners and managers of the press determine which persons, which facts, which versions of these facts, shall reach the public," writes the Commission. In this same light, Siebert, Peterson and Schramm warn: ... he power and near monopoly position of the media impose on them an obligation to be socially responsible, to see that all sides are fairly presented and that the public has enough information to decide; and that if the media do not take on themselves such responsibility it may be necessary for some other agency of the public to enforce it. The Canons of Journalism, adopted by the American Society of Newspaper Editors addresses these same obligations when it calls on newspapers to practice responsibility to the general welfare, sincerity, truthfulness, impartiality, fair play, decency, and respect for the individual's privacy.

Siebert, Peterson and Schramm also note that "freedom of expression under the social responsibility theory is not an absolute right, as under pure libertarian theory.... One's right to free expression must be balanced against the private rights of others and against vital social interests. " For example, it likely would not be socially responsible to report how the terrorist, using some new method, evaded security measures and smuggled a bomb onto a commercial airline.

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Social Responsibility Theory. (2018, Feb 08). Retrieved from

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