A matter of trust: Plagiarism, fake sources and paradigm repair in the Danish news media

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Resumé

In December of 2015 two major journalistic scandals hit the Danish news media. The two scandals ran almost concurrently, which increased the media attention and was reflected in the coverage. In a time of diminishing trust in the news media these scandals represented a significant and acute credibility problem for the news media that were affected. Using paradigm repair theory coupled with theory about transparency, this paper analyses which strategies the affected news media employed to re-instore trust in their journalism, and thus in the traditional news paradigm. Like previous studies we find that the news media tried to distance themselves from the journalists involved in the scandals and describe them as ‘bad apples’. In both scandals the news media also went to great lengths to investigate the accusations and publically document the transgressions of the reporters. This effort could be seen as an attempt to increase transparency about the scandals, but the reports focused only on the journalists in focus, and not on the news organization, where they worked. As a consequence the affected editors and news organizations largely avoided any blame and speculation as to their role in the scandals.
In December of 2015 two major journalistic scandals hit the Danish news media. The two scandals ran almost concurrently, which increased the media attention and was reflected in the coverage. In a time of diminishing trust in the news media these scandals represented a significant and acute credibility problem for the news media that were affected. Using paradigm repair theory coupled with theory about transparency, this paper analyses which strategies the affected news media employed to re-instore trust in their journalism, and thus in the traditional news paradigm. Like previous studies we find that the news media tried to distance themselves from the journalists involved in the scandals and describe them as ‘bad apples’. In both scandals the news media also went to great lengths to investigate the accusations and publically document the transgressions of the reporters. This effort could be seen as an attempt to increase transparency about the scandals, but the reports focused only on the journalists in focus, and not on the news organization, where they worked. As a consequence the affected editors and news organizations largely avoided any blame and speculation as to their role in the scandals.
SprogEngelsk
TidsskriftJournalism Studies
Antal sider13
ISSN1461-670X
StatusE-pub ahead of print - 6 jul. 2018

Emneord

  • Journalism
  • media ethics
  • scandal
  • Denmark
  • paradigm repair

Citer dette

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abstract = "In December of 2015 two major journalistic scandals hit the Danish news media. The two scandals ran almost concurrently, which increased the media attention and was reflected in the coverage. In a time of diminishing trust in the news media these scandals represented a significant and acute credibility problem for the news media that were affected. Using paradigm repair theory coupled with theory about transparency, this paper analyses which strategies the affected news media employed to re-instore trust in their journalism, and thus in the traditional news paradigm. Like previous studies we find that the news media tried to distance themselves from the journalists involved in the scandals and describe them as ‘bad apples’. In both scandals the news media also went to great lengths to investigate the accusations and publically document the transgressions of the reporters. This effort could be seen as an attempt to increase transparency about the scandals, but the reports focused only on the journalists in focus, and not on the news organization, where they worked. As a consequence the affected editors and news organizations largely avoided any blame and speculation as to their role in the scandals.",
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