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Real-World Media Ethics

Book Description

The Los Angeles Times recently reported that the word "integrity” was the most looked up word on Merriam-Webster's online dictionary, suggesting that people are looking for guidance in a scandal-driven world. Issues of ethics and the media continue to dominate our awareness and present real challenges in our day-to-day work. This book shows the ethical decision-making process in action using tools of critical analysis and evaluation.

Real-World Media Ethics is written in a friendly and approachable voice. It succeeds in offering an honest, frontline-aware and realistic sense of the ethical situations faced by entertainment and journalism professionals every day-in the real world.

Most of the other books about media ethics focus mostly on journalism; this book, however, covers not just journalistic ethics but also ethics in the landscape of mass media, including public relations, the entertainment industry, and other forms of visual communication. The author includes numerous case studies about current headlines that readers will already be familiar with, providing realistic and engaging scenarios about when, how, and why ethics count.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Halftitle
  3. Title
  4. Copyright
  5. Contents
  6. Acknowledgments
  7. Foreword by Bob Saget
  8. Chapter 1 Ethical Issues: A Starting Framework
    1. A Need for Studying Ethics
    2. The Responsibilities of the Media
    3. An Ethical Approach
    4. Defining the Terms
    5. Industry Standards
    6. Dating
    7. You Decide
    8. A Starting Framework
    9. Player Wannabe: Bill Silver’s Story
    10. The E*T*H*I*C*S Rubric
  9. Chapter 2 Business Ethics in Mass Media by Martin P. Carlson
    1. Key Terms Used in Business Affairs Negotiations
    2. Ethics in Negotiations
    3. You Decide
    4. Ethics and Conflicts of Interest
    5. Attorneys and Ethics
    6. Agents and Ethics
    7. You Decide
    8. Managers and Ethics
    9. You Decide
    10. Corporate Self-Dealing
    11. Government Regulation
    12. Results of Relaxation of Government Regulation
    13. Sample Studio Contractual Provision for Profit Participants
    14. Payola
    15. You Decide
    16. You Decide
  10. Chapter 3 Ethics and the Role of Producers, Writers, Actors, and Directors
    1. Finding Material: The Search for a Good Story
    2. You Decide
    3. Producing a Student Film
    4. Partnering
    5. Creating a Partnership
    6. Producing on a Tight Schedule
    7. You Decide
    8. Selling
    9. Producers and the Coarsening of the Culture
    10. Producer Loyalty
    11. You Decide
    12. Producer Feuds: Motivated by Ethical Considerations—or Not?
    13. Video Game Producers and Creators
    14. Ethics and a Writer’s Creative Process
    15. The Debate Over Credits
    16. You Decide
    17. Actors and Ethics
    18. Director Choices
    19. You Decide
  11. Chapter 4 Controversy and Ethics
    1. Fatal Contact: Bird Flu in America
    2. You Decide
    3. The Jury and Jenny Jones
    4. Catching a Predator
    5. You Decide
    6. O.J. Simpson Redux
    7. You Decide
    8. Crossing Jordan and Controversy
    9. Sex Slaves
    10. Controversy or Advocacy?
    11. Abortion
    12. You Decide
    13. Children and Controversy
    14. Hounddog
    15. Bastard Out of Carolina
    16. Edges of the Lord
    17. You Decide
  12. Chapter 5 Ethics and Programmers
    1. Programming Decisions and Politics
    2. Stolen Honor: Wounds That Never Heal
    3. You Decide
    4. Public Broadcasting and Politics
    5. Self-Censorship and Programming Decisions
    6. Programmers and the Creative Team
    7. You Decide
    8. You Decide , Round 2
    9. Buyer Enthusiasm and Ethical Behavior
    10. Mediating and Ethics
    11. Flight 93
    12. Different Kinds of Ethical Questions Facing Programmers
    13. You Decide
    14. Reality and Ethics
    15. You Decide
    16. Short Takes
    17. Animal Ethics
    18. When Current Events Impact Programming Decisions
    19. Host Actions
    20. Borrowing, Copying, or Outright Stealing
    21. You Decide
    22. MTV and the Programming of Sex
  13. Chapter 6 Ethics and Fact-Based Stories
    1. What’s Real and What Isn’t
    2. Documentaries and Ethics
    3. You Decide
    4. Oliver Stone
    5. The Fact Police on the Attack
    6. The Fact-Based Police Attack Early
    7. The Path to 9/11
    8. You Decide
    9. A Million Little Pieces by James Frey
    10. Freelance Book Editors and Fact-based Projects
    11. Rights and Ethics
    12. You Decide
    13. Securing Approvals Can Raise Ethical Concerns
    14. You Decide
    15. How to Interact with Rights Holders Ethically
    16. You Decide
  14. Chapter 7 Ethics and Ratings
    1. PG, PG-13, TV-MA
    2. Movie Ratings
    3. Billboards and a Film’s Rating
    4. You Decide
    5. Television Ratings
    6. TV Parental Guidelines
    7. You Decide
    8. Music and Video Games
    9. Audience Measurement: Television and Radio
    10. The Battle Gets Fierce
    11. You Decide
  15. Chapter 8 Journalism and Ethics by Jeffrey Brody
    1. You Decide
    2. Trial by Press
    3. Infotainment
    4. Making Up Stories
    5. You Decide
    6. Code of Ethics
  16. Chapter 9 Ethics and New Media by Brian Gross
    1. You Decide
    2. Ethics of the Internet Service Provider (ISP)
    3. Power of the ISP
    4. You Decide
    5. “Free” Internet Service Providers
    6. You Decide
    7. Ethics of Government Interference
    8. You Decide
    9. Build It and They Will (All) Come
    10. Children and the Internet—To Monitor or Not to Monitor?
    11. The Story of Robbie Kirkland
    12. Does Net Neutrality Equal World Chaos?
    13. Net Neutrality: A Perfect Solution in an Imperfect World?
    14. You Decide
    15. The Ethics of “Gotcha” Political Blogging
    16. Individuals and the Internet
    17. You Decide
  17. Chapter 10 Censorship and Celebrity
    1. A Broadcast Standards and Practices Questionnaire
    2. Violence
    3. Imitable Actions
    4. Balance, Errors, and Value Judgments
    5. You Decide
    6. Sex
    7. You Decide
    8. A Different BS&P Approach
    9. You Decide
    10. Pressure Groups
    11. From the Perspective of a BS&P Veterans
    12. Tell The FCC: Stop Covert Commercials on TV!
    13. Heightened Sensitivity, or Political Correctness Run Amuck?
    14. You Decide
    15. Celebrity
    16. The Total Picture Revealed
    17. Two Biographical Sketches
    18. You Decide
    19. Lunching Ethically in Hollywood
    20. Right to Know?
    21. Revealing All
    22. You Decide
    23. Celebrity Gossip
    24. Mel Gibson
    25. Tom Cruise
    26. You Decide
    27. Star Jones
    28. Celebrity Verification
    29. You Decide
    30. Celebrity Worship
    31. Hollywood Inside Stories
    32. You Decide
  18. Chapter 11 Diversity and Consolidation
    1. How to Achieve Diversity
    2. A Possible Indirect Diversity Connection
    3. You Decide
    4. Consolidation and Diversity
    5. The Center for Creative Voices
    6. Advancing an Agenda
    7. You Decide
    8. Consolidation and Jobs
    9. Consolidation and Increased Indecency
    10. Exploring Links Between Consolidation and Indecency
    11. You Decide
  19. Chapter 12 The Ethics of Public Relations by Carol Ames
    1. Controlled PR Materials
    2. Uncontrolled PR and Media Relations
    3. *E*valuate
    4. *T*ruth and the “Story Pitch” Bargain
    5. *T*ruth or Consequences
    6. You Decide
    7. *T*ruth and Controlled PR Materials
    8. *T*ruth, Word of Mouth, and Internet PR
    9. *E*thics and Word of Mouth
    10. Word-of-Mouth Marketing Association Ethics Assessment Tool: The Ethics 20 Questions
    11. You Decide
    12. *H*arm
    13. You Decide
    14. *I*nvestigate
    15. *C*odes of Ethics
    16. Public Relations Society of America: Member Statement of Professional Values
    17. *S*ituation
  20. Chapter 13 Ethical Issues in Advertising and Marketing
    1. Exploiting Controversy
    2. You Decide
    3. Product Placement and Product Integration
    4. Labeling Product Placement
    5. Making Sure Products are on View
    6. You Decide
    7. Virtual Advertising
    8. Other Ways to Market
    9. You Decide
    10. Creating Television Promotional Spots and Ethics
    11. Are Ethics at Play in Accepting or Rejecting a Promotional Spot?
    12. Million-Dollar Fraud
    13. You Decide
  21. Index