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Americans for Ethics in Journalism
Petition Background (Preamble):
Only in more recent times, with 24 hour news cycle and competition for ratings, we are faced with a media which does more to incite, divide, and mislead Americans than one which seeks to inform, educate and bring people together for common good.
Facts are tossed aside for monetary gain/ratings.
For example, most recently, in a push for ratings, Newsweek gave a blatant example of what is presented to Americans: "America’s First Gay President" was splashed across the cover complete with rainbow halo.
Certainly it is disrespectful to the office of the Presidency and many Americans faced with that image and those untrue words will never open Newsweek to read an accompanying article for further clarification of the historical significance for America. It is as wrong to present information like this as it would for someone to send a card that on the outside says “All your loved ones have died.” It is not justified by the fact that when the card is opened they will read: “laughing when I told that old joke.” Misleading viewers and readers isn’t ethical journalism.
We are asking for a return to journalists who perform thorough research, who'll ask tough questions, present facts and correct guests with facts when they are interviewing them. Yes, hours or days later someone will clarify when a lie was told yet it is not done in the moment and that is why so many never know what is true or false.
The debate over the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) is a perfect example. For months, media allowed lies about the law (death panels) to be spewed without correcting them. Seldom did media actually present the facts about how the law would help Americans. The result was confusion about legislation that is already helping millions.
Another example is the gridlock in Congress. Media has portrayed this as the fault of both parties, when indeed it is the Republican party that chose from day one to obstruct everything President Obama proposed that would help the country. When, Republicans blocked the jobs bills and student loans bill, media portrayed this as the bill failing, which was not true.
We Americans will not allow media to hijack our democracy by presenting distorted information. CNN has already seen a 21% drop in ratings (April 2012 over April 2011) because of this biased reporting.
We ask you to change course or face a boycott of your shows and sponsors.
We want a media that educates and informs not one which incites and divides. We want a media which delivers facts and information without partisanship for the good of America to tell us, factually how something will benefit us or harm us, debates with viewpoints based on facts not political gain or station or publication ratings for media's financial gains.
We, the undersigned, want a return to ethical reporting which will benefit all Americans by having an informed society.
The Americans for Ethics in Journalism petition to CEO of CNN Philip Kent; Newsweek Editor David Frum; MSNBC, Phil Griffin;and Fox News, Roger Ailes was written by Pam and is in the category Media Issues at GoPetition. Contact author here. Petition tags: truth, media, facts, ethics