Fourth Estate Articles List



140 Articles Found


As Ottawa helps the news industry, latest research suggests journalists’ loyalties are tough to buy

Ottawa has finally announced the details of how it will offer financial assistance to the country’s struggling news media industry — a controversial policy that will lead to suggestions that journalistic independence is compromised by government funding.


Christchurch attacks provide a new ethics lesson for professional media

Two basic rules of media ethics apply to the coverage of terrorism: avoid giving unnecessary oxygen to the terrorist, and avoid unnecessarily violating standards of public decency. The way to do this is to apply a test of necessity: what is necessary to publish to give the public a sufficiently comprehensive account of what has happened?


Why science matters so much in the era of fake news and fallacies

Democracy and social progress die without science and fact-based knowledge. Science and facts are the foundational basis for rational and logical disputation and the possibility of reaching some truths. Fake news, on the other hand, is a calculated assault on democratic freedoms.


Why news outlets should think twice about republishing the New Zealand mosque shooter's livestream

Like so many times before with acts of mass violence in different parts of the world, news of shootings at two Christchurch mosques on Friday instantly ricocheted around the world via social media.


The internet is now an arena for conflict, and we’re all caught up in it

Most people think the internet operates as a kind of global public square. In reality, it’s become a divided arena where conflict between nation states plays out. Nation states run covert operations on the same platforms we use to post cat videos and exchange gossip. And if we’re not aware of it, we could be unwittingly used as pawns for the wrong side. How did we get here? It’s complicated, but let’s walk through some of the main elements.


Media companies on notice over traumatised journalists after landmark court decision

A landmark ruling by an Australian court is expected to have international consequences for newsrooms, with media companies on notice they face large compensation claims if they fail to take care of journalists who regularly cover traumatic events.


Why the demise of specialist reporters is a loss for any democracy

The newspaper industry in many countries is in the doldrums. Retrenchments have become the norm with experienced journalists who specialize in a particular reporting area – known as “beat reporting” – are among the first to go.


Why we see hope for the future of science journalism

Eat blueberries for the antioxidants. Exercise daily at a moderate intensity for optimal heart health. Get the vaccine to prevent the disease. Our decision-making and conduct is influenced by what we read, see or hear. And many parts of our lives, from the food we eat to our quality of sleep, can in some way be linked back to scientific research.


The law is closing in on Facebook and the 'digital gangsters'

For social media and search engines, the law is back in town. Prompted by privacy invasions, the spread of misinformation, a crisis in news funding and potential interference in elections, regulators in several countries now propose a range of interventions to curb the power of digital platforms.


Local newspapers had a golden age – but it was 150 years ago

This article will be no help whatsoever to Britain’s crumbling local newspaper industry. After 12 years researching the provincial press at its peak period, the second half of the 19th century, I have no answers for today’s business in crisis. In 2018, the fourth largest regional newspaper group in Britain, Johnston Press, recently went bust (and was then “rescued” by a US asset fund). A quarter of the country’s local papers have closed in the last ten years. Jobs have been cut, print sales tumble, and profits dwindle (although many local papers still make money). Fewer reporters staffing local papers mean fewer original stories, which makes the papers less attractive to readers, which accelerates the decline. The industry itself blames internet advertising, and competition from Facebook and Google. Others blame local newspaper management, not known for its dynamism or strategic ...