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Publication
Professional ethics | Media and Democracy
Spaces for debate, mediation and régulation of journalism practices
Published on 18 October 2014 by Collectif

Press ethics are debated in many different areas, and not always those one would expect. This diversification underlines the new and widespread emphasis on moral issues, an unusual trend in journalism till now. The rights and responsibilities of the press have often been discussed, but never before have so many different entities taken a stand on the issue. Some advocate for moral journalism, as if this should be enforced, imposed, like a responsibility. Others defend journalism’s reflexivity, based on individual judgment, reflection and arbitration and considered to be a right. These two outlooks draw a fine line between morals and ethics, between what is clearly compulsory and what is deemed to be right, to quote Paul Ricoeur. What does this evolution mean, and how do ethics make their way into these many areas of debate?

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Publication
Practice of the profession | Professional ethics
New paths for investigative journalism
Published on 18 October 2014 by Aurore Gorius

Speed and haste have never been great allies for journalism. The increasing influence of the Internet and multiplication of broadcasting channels have made information flow a lot faster. News is broadcast as soon as possible and commentary delivered immediately. Newsrooms have to continuously do more, with less. This historical technical turning point questions the essence of journalism and its credibility: in this context, where can investigative journalism and reports written over long periods of time exist?

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Publication
Practice of the profession | Professional ethics
“Public life / private life: what are the boundaries for European journalists?”
Published on 2 October 2014 by Collectif

It is true that the line between private and public life has varied over time, according to social, political and cultural contexts, today it is increasingly thin and, at times, porous. Where are the boundaries in the public arena? What is the situation for our neighbours and throughout Europe? When can national media cross this figurative limit? How is this separation viewed by European countries? How does the culture and history of a population affect the acceptance or not of intrusion into the private life of a public figure? This booklet takes stock and assesses the way the media deals with the public/private issue, in Italy, France, Sweden, Slovenia and United-Kingdom.

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Publication
Practice of the profession | Media and Democracy
The French, the media and journalists: trust no more…
Published on 12 November 2013 by Bertrand Verfaillie

My regional newspaper stopped publishing April fools’ pranks. The custom may well be extinct, because now it feels a lot less like a joke. For April fools’ to work, readers have to completely trust in their media’s competence, rigor and ethics. The tricked reader will only laugh at the joke with whoever pulled it, if they share a connection, a sort of pact. They need to be bonded, either consciously or instinctively, by trust…

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Publication
Practice of the profession | Professional ethics
The Journalists’ arbitration commission, a joint-consultation system
Published on 5 November 2013 by Denis Ruellan

Every individual case handled by the arbitration commission is both commonplace and unique... The commission is often referred to for the same reasons, mainly cession, economic layoffs and misconduct. But behind this apparent simplicity are an infinity of specific cases and different careers. Particularly since the arbitration procedure has significant impact on both work contracts and joint consultation, and is therefore a crossroads where financial stakes, social relations within the media and personal interests collide. Consultations with journalists on cases they referred to arbitration and sitting in on commission debates reveal recurrent and cross-sector resort to the authority, making it a place to express one’s disagreement with the conditions journalists work in.

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Publication
Professional ethics | Media and Democracy
The Journalists’ Societies and the notion of participation in the press enterprise
Published on 2 November 2012 by Manola Gardez

« Are we doomed to painfully oscillate between a system whereby workers are simple instruments in the enterprise which they belong to and another that would crush everyone, body and soul, in an odious, totalitarian and bureaucratic machinery?

No! The human, French and practical solution to this question that dominates everything is neither in the lowering of oneself nor in the servitude of others. The solution is in the proper and fruitful association of those who would put in common, within the same company, their work, their techniques or their property; those who would share openly as honest shareholders, the benefits and the risks.

Admittedly, this is not the way advocated by those who do not recognize that enhancing man’s dignity is not only a moral duty but also a condition of performance, nor by those who conceive the future as a termite mound. «

April 7, 1947, Charles de Gaulle

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Publication
Practice of the profession
Multimedia journalism, multi-constraints or multi-challenges ?
Published on 11 October 2012 by Ariane Allard

« If the human mind likes surfing, it gets quickly tired of floating. Hence the recurrent question : are those new journalists « Shivas or not Shivas » -to use one of their many labels- ? Or even more, can we name them « sherpas » ?

Not so simple, as the Hindu god they are ironically compared with : after all, the four arms of the Yogi are supposed to allow them to write, twitt, make a video, a sound, a photo, or animate a community! »

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Publication
Practice of the profession
Journalists and social networks, evolution or revolution?
Published on 10 October 2012 by Nathalie Dollé

« When it would be both improper and redundant to go back to the technical and economic press sector changes, a reflection on social networks is imposing questions about the practical implications in journalists’ daily work. In the same time, we need to interrogate implicit notions that were probably not so often examined, but also ethical aspects and renewed relations between journalists and sources, the public, partners and their own media. »

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Publication
Professional ethics
« Yours and mine »
Conflicts of interest in media information
Published on 10 November 2011 by Bertrand Verfaillie

If the work of former Secretary of State, Martin Hirsch, made some stir, Bertrand Verfaillie’s book comes as a complement to the important missing section on media and information.

The notion of conflict of interest in the press and information is a current topic which the author explores in different dimensions : all types of relationships that could cause a conflict of interest are indeed addressed and are investigated and detailed by interviews.

To remedy this situation, the author not only requires the necessary use of ethical reference texts and presents the activist initiatives in support of their resolutions, but also offers some personal solutions such as a declarative system involving the responsibility of each one.

« A high-conception of information, sharpened professional consciences, practice to report the fact treatment to another journalist when you are implicated, ever more extensive and concrete ethical charters, statements of links when the needs’ arises … so many ways to attack and reduce the impact of conflicts of interest in journalism. »

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Publication
Practice of the profession
Journalism, an evolving collective
Published on 9 November 2011 by Nathalie Dollé

If obtaining the status of journalist has been a long struggle, this profession has finally won its legitimacy, and even a highly respected position. Was the team, which quickly became the editorial staff, a community from the beginning or only a group of individuals ?

As a various and fluctuating profession, journalism has continued to change throughout its history. Today, new mutations have arisen; as the heart of these media enterprises changes into bi-media newsrooms, what happens with the individual and the collective?

Nathalie Dollé presents, at the end of her book, her personal hypothesis: the collective of journalists is not fading, it is restructuring and adjusting itself and may be strengthened if it can take into account its fundamental ethical and professional rules.

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Publication
Transmission of journalism
Journalism: The informal transmission of the know-how and the « know-being »
Published on 24 November 2010 by Thomas Ferenczi

This booklet presents the informal aspect of learning the profession : the intergenerational transmission, the « home-made culture », the entrepreneurial spirit, the mentoring of elders …

Accommodate young journalists on their arrival in a news-desk, assist them in appropriating values, fundamental ethical principals and acquiring the principles of their media…, is this transmission still appropriate and in what manners?

« The time in which the media were concerned to form their staff with a « spirit house », respectful of the identity of the media and its rules, seems over.But in recent years the concept of « company culture » has returned.It is expressed by setting in place new procedures to reinforce the socialization of newcomers. »

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Publication
Journalism training
Journalism education around the world
North America-Brasil-China-Italy-Maghreb
Published on 27 August 2009 by Collectif

The three booklets published in 2009 are dealing with journalism education : initial and continuing formation, the study of ethics and some examples of journalism formation provided in the world (this booklet).

Journalism education in the five regions of the world here presented, illustrate the diversity of professional situations.

North America have to face the challenge levelled to its media, which is to regain credibility.

The Brazilian press’ pursuit of independence involves rethinking journalism education in this youthful country.

China is a moving society out of which traditional media and online news are thrown in a disproportionate extension.

Italy has a special position within Europe through its access to the journalistic profession which do depends on the only editors’ will.

The Maghreb is a region for which we need to deal with the recognition of the profession before talking about journalism education.

Without being judgemental, this booklet is just looking forward to strengthening common ties to all the professionals of journalism.

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Publication
Journalism training
On going ethics
Why and how to form journalists to professional ethics
Published on 27 August 2009 by Nathalie Dollé

The three booklets published in 2009 deals with journalism education: initial and continuing formation, the study of ethics (this booklet) and some examples of the formation provided in the world .

Why training journalists with professional ethics ?

Because it is constitutive of the profession’s identity.

The ethical and deontological principles are the major « fundamentals rules » of the profession.

How to train journalists with professional ethics ?

An ideal is to start the formation in school and pursue by during continuing education even if ethics is a concern that every journalist should handle daily.

If it is to raise the journalists and their hierarchy’s awareness with professional ethics, guaranteeing a search for quality information, this will hopefully become the subject of a constant search in the whole world of media to defend the press and serve democracy.

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Publication
Journalism training
Press, to the board!
Journalism ecucation, journalists education
Published on 26 August 2009 by Bertrand Verfaillie

The three booklets published in 2009 deals with journalism education: initial and continuing formation (this booklet), the study of ethics and some examples of the formation provided in the world .

Whether journalism was born in France with Theophraste Renaudot in the 17 th century, whether the practice of journalism has become a proper profession for several centuries, the idea that one can train and learn to be a journalist is much more recent. The first school opened in 1924 in Lille (France); they are counted in tens today.

The initial training was primarily created to offer an alternative to what is called the « learning by doing » , it claims not to have the only function of answering the needs of press companies.

Continuing training aimed at maintaining and updating skills and practises of working professionals, but is not fully used, most often because of time.To the everlasting question « should the journalists be trained ? », the answer would be «the cost of ignorance is much higher that the one of training».

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Publication
Media regulation
Press councils, a solution?
Regulation,mediation,ethics watch
Published on 21 March 2008 by Gilles Labarthe

The three booklets published in 2008 deals with journalism’s regulation, following the example of what Claude Jean Bertrand called « M.A.R.S » (Media Accountability and Responsability System).

Press councils are regulatoring bodies which have been created to deal with the abuses and the most egregious violations to the journalists’ ethic code. The first one was founded in Sweden in 1916, today there are over a hundred in the world , but France is still refusing such an instance.

Conveniently composed of three parts, press council meets publishers, journalists and audience. Based on deontological codes and charters to ensure compliance with the principles that the profession acquires at the national level, the press council is also a place of monitoring the profession’s practice. Preventing of the heavy constraints of a legal tribunal, such an authority give most often moral sanctions : the release of its opinion. Far from stigmatizing the profession, press council is made to protect journalists.

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Publication
Media regulation
Press Ombusmen
Did the press seeking for credibility found her Zorro?
Published on 21 March 2008 by Frédérique Béal

The three booklets published in 2008 deals with journalism’s regulation, following the example of what Claude Jean Bertrand called « M.A.R.S » (Media Accountability and Responsability System).

The function of mediator, which is a link between media and audience, appeared in 1913 under the name of « ombudsman » in the United States. Then comes the Japanese press which has developed this idea and we have to wait mid 1980s for it to appear in Europe. This Booklet raises the question of whether the Ombudsman is above all a regulator of journalistic practises or a reconciliator of the suspicious relationships that the public has to the media. Is he therefore closer to the audiennce than journalists ?

Having also as reference criteria the deontological texts, the mediator should ideally be independent in order to be able to freely exercise its role of safeguarding the quality of information.

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Publication
Media regulation
Do editorial offices have a soul?
Society of editors, society of journalists
Published on 15 March 2008 by Bertrand Verfaillie

The three booklets published in 2008 deals with journalism’s regulation, following the example of what Claude Jean Bertrand called « M.A.R.S » (Media Accountability and Responsability System).

« Societies of Journalists » or « Societies of Editors » were established in France, after the Second World War and aimed at making the journalistical skills exists in an independent way, as money capital.

Exclusively French organizations, at least under that appellation, the « Societies of Journalists » may have various forms but all have the role of interlocutor between journalists and management authorities. It’s goal is first and foremost to represent and defend, that may be why they are more active during periods of crisis or when the media is facing a conflict.

Whether it seems natural that journalists are organized within an entity of their own, the practice in France showed that these societies are not as durable as one might think.

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