Ethics & Blogging

April 7, 2 – 4pm
Anderson Auditorium, Scripps Hall

Blogging is often celebrated as a form of social networking and community building that allows for a grass-roots type of political and journalistic activity. However, while journalism is supposed to be objective and unbiased, the whole point of blogging is to combine facts with pointed opinion and tartly written commentary. Political blogging is at the intersection of news journalism, slanted reporting, media-critique, gossip, chatter, and personal confession. The Ethics & Blogging panel (and the associated workshops) will explore ethical issues specific to this genre.

Moderator: Bernhard Debatin, Scripps School of Journalism, Ohio University
Presentations in this panel:

Interactivity and Prioritizing the Human: A Code of Blogging Ethic (Martin Kuhn)
A code of ethics for blogging should be based on the rhetorical form of blogging rather than on one particular function of blogs such as journalism. Values like “promoting interactivity” and “prioritizing the human elements of blog discourse” need to be prioritized to the same extent as values like transparency and accountability.

Privacy and Accountability in Blogging (Fernanda Viegas)
Fernanda Viegas will talk about blogging and privacy. Her presentation will be based on the results from a survey she conducted on bloggers’ subjective sense of privacy and perceptions of liability in 2004.

Rhetoric of Political Bloggers (Jan Boyles)
Research has demonstrated mainstream media pundits are mired in partisan rancor and rhetoric, eschewing rational arguments for emotional opinions. Will bloggers follow suit?

Blogging investigative reporting: The Videoblog (Sandeep Junnarker)
Sandeep Junnarkar will speak about harnessing the Web Blogging’s multimedia capabilities to tell the untold stories; and the technical, financial, journalistic and ethical challenges an independent journalist/blogger faces when trying to bypass the traditional media gate keepers.

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