Taking Journalism Seriously (Hardcover)

'objectivity' as a Partisan Cause

By Richard H. Reeb

University Press of America, 9780761812753, 326pp.

Publication Date: December 30, 1998

Other Editions of This Title:
Paperback (12/30/1998)

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Taking Journalism Seriously provides a groundbreaking analysis of the adequacy of the standard of objectivity in journalism, using the journalistic principles of the Founding Fathers of America as the point of comparison. The author traces the present controversy back to the start of the consistent controversy that surrounds the press coverage of politics, when in 1969 Vice President Spiro Agnew charged the nation's television networks and newspapers with distorting political events and hampering the functioning of the government. He exposes the gradual shift of the press away from the objective reporting of facts into a partisan instrument for safeguarding the public's right to know. The line between editorial writing and reporting has virtually disappeared. Since objectivity provided its most dominant proof of integrity, the public trust of this institution has diminished. The author draws on major incidents that demonstrate this shift, including a prominent CBS documentary, the New York Times reporting on the Pentagon Papers, and the writers who influenced this evolution in journalism, while balancing this situation against the ideas of the Founding Fathers on journalism.

About the Author

Richard H. Reeb is Instructor of Political Science and Philosophy at Barstow College.