Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Journalistic Integrity?

I never took a journalism class in college, but I did take a few ethics classes - and that's all I need to know that the company behind Louisville's largest newspaper isn't the most trustworthy. Our integrity is perhaps best measured by how we treat those with the least influence and power. Sadly, as a friend of mine has discovered, the Courier-Journal doesn't measure up.

HT: About.com: Louisville

1 comment:

Moppy said...

I am one of the students who worked on the C-J project. From the very beginning, we [students] were promised a byline. Just think, as a student, how exciting and motivating it was to do work for an organization affiliated with Gannett Publishing. I thought, “This is it.” The break I was looking for to go on my college resume, the one that would give me some form of advancement over other grads entering the market was sitting at my feet. For two months I worked my self silly running all over Kentuckiana, not being reimbursed for gas, and looking forward to the day that my name would appear with the 60 some-odd profiles I wrote. So you can only imagine how devastated I was to read that, even though the project manager was “very sorry,” that we weren’t getting our bylines. I have several emails that talk about how we were getting bylines for early on in the project, where those bylines should appear in the venue descriptions, and how to format them. And then this…the rug being snatched out from under us. Sure, we were paid for our work, but I took that job for name recognition, to get my bylines out there on the web, and to help build a professional portfolio. But I guess it doesn’t matter to them, they already have jobs in journalism. This has to be some form of copyright infringement. We were not paid as ghostwriters; we were paid as contributors who would receive a credited byline. And now what do we have? Nothing, because anyone in the world could say they wrote our profiles. And it’s just like one of the other people who posted said, karma will come back to those people. And I hope the only emotion they feel today, the day they are supposed to launch their new site, isn’t excitement. No, I hope they feel reprehensible shame, the kind that equates to the complete disappointment and disgust us students feel about being swindled at the very last minute out of something that was promised to us all along.