Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Conflict of Interest Lesson

In a recent edition of The South Texan, we ran a review on the university's drama production of "Sleeping Beauty." While the critical review was well presented and written well, it did not completely meet ethical standards for journalism. The review was done by a student who had tried out for the production and was not chosen as one of the cast members. That presents an automatic bias and the staff (and adviser) should have prevented that student from doing the review. While this was not a serious breach of ethics, it could have been. The review was critical and to the point, but it should have been written by another student journalist.

2 comments:

tamuk student said...

I know for a fact that the South Texan tries to teach "real world lessons", so they try not to be bias and write like real journalists. However in this school that can be hard because,for instance, with almost anyone who covered the story of the play there would have been bias because most people know the actors, and that itself is a bias. Journalists are supposed to tell the truth and not sugar coat things. We can only hope that the writer wrote based on real opinion and not bias. But as actors you should be taught that sometimes you will get a bad review. College is a place to learn, so that is how this should be taken--as a learning experience.

Long Time Hoggie said...

It's a small world at TAMUK, no? Still, having direct involvement with an event - like a student-directed play - and then writing about it is a true conflict of interest and should be avoided.