What you can do to keep responsible journalism alive

Think about what a potential “Day Without Responsible Journalism” could mean

CALGARY, Alta. Nov. 29, 2016/ Troy Media/ – If you value news reported in the public interest, democracy and human rights, and facts that are rigorously reported and verified, then please think about what a potential “Day Without Responsible Journalism” could mean.

Thankfully, there are several actions we can each take to ensure that day doesn’t come:

  • First, don’t keep expecting quality news to materialize for free. Journalists work hard, and deserve to be paid for their efforts. So pay for what you value, and take out a digital subscription (or two!) to a reputable news service. And while you’re at it, write your MLA in support of continued CBC funding.
  • Enrich your life by consuming more news that’s reputable and noteworthy, as opposed to mindless Internet babble. And then talk about the stories that matter to you and that give information to improve your life and promote a healthy democratic society.
  • If called upon by a journalist, answer questions openly and honestly,and understand that he or she is doing a job, and has the best interests of our collective society at heart. If you’re asked a question that seems unfair, say so – and explain your reasoning. We report only what we know, so if you don’t speak up, your side of the story won’t be heard.
  • If you publish a blog or share videos or commentary via social media, please do so responsibly: check your facts, consider the impact of your words and images, and give anyone who’s depicted negatively a chance to respond. Better yet, observe basic journalistic norms such as those in the [popup url=”http://www.j-source.ca/article/caj-ethics-guidelines” height=”1000″ width=”1200″ scrollbars=”1″]Ethics Guidelines[/popup] published by the Canadian Association of Journalists.
  • Trust your gut .When you come across a “news report” that sounds too crazy to be true – especially from an unknown source – it probably is. There are several sites where you can check out “fake news” and hoaxes, such as [popup url=”http://snopes.com/” height=”1000″ width=”1200″ scrollbars=”1″]snopes.com[/popup].
  • And finally, be a responsible citizen in your social media endeavours by forwarding, sharing and liking ONLY truthful, reputable news that demonstrates rigorous research and verification, that is transparent and balanced, and that comes from a journalistic source you trust.

| Shauna Snow-Capparelli

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