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Ethical question

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by What Deadline, Nov 24, 2009.

  1. What Deadline

    What Deadline New Member

    Our newspaper has a magazine. You know the type that features all the high society parties, etc. Well, the mag did a cover story on a musician. Two months later, the manager of said musician dropped off tickets for his concert. Many of the staffers who worked on the magazine took the tickets.

    My question is this. Is accepting and using the tickets ethical behavior? I say no and that the tickets should have been politely declined. A close friend tells me that I'm wrong and that magazines do this kind of stuff all the time.

    What say you?
  2. da man

    da man Well-Known Member

    They probably do.

    That does not make it ethical.
  3. Fredrick

    Fredrick Well-Known Member

    You have to decline the tickets or accept them and give to a charity. I have been offered gifts in my job and immediately refused. Not worth getting fired over. I'd rather leave this business on my terms.
  4. beanpole

    beanpole Member

    This kind of stuff happens way too often. It's not ethical.
  5. joe_schmoe

    joe_schmoe Active Member

    I disagree. I don't find it unethical. If you do the story to obtain the tickets that's unethical. But no one asked for them, people are still allowed to give gifts.

    Are you calling it unethical because it might blur your vision of the coverage?

    I know of several NFL teams that give the major metros that cover them quite a few season tickets, and at one I know of have seen a few staffers in sports using these tickets. Big whoop. The paper still does it's job covering the team fairly.

    I see people all the time call it unethical to accept these gifts, yet no one ever seems to have a good explanation as to why, other than it's what they've been taught.
  6. Football_Bat

    Football_Bat Well-Known Member

    What's the diff? Just saying.
  7. beanpole

    beanpole Member

    You think the musician would hand out tickets if the magazine did a hatchet job, or was critical? Of course not. He/she did it as a thank you, and that's why it's not appropriate. You don't want to start down that slippery slope of accepting gifts in exchange for positive coverage.
  8. Inky_Wretch

    Inky_Wretch Well-Known Member

    Playing off FB ... Our newspaper has a business section. You know the type that features all the high society companies, etc. Well, the mag did a cover story on a car dealership. Two months later, the manager of said dealership dropped off vouchers for $1,000 off a new car. Many of the staffers who worked on the business section took the vouchers.

    (Yeah, they shouldn't have taken those concert tickets.)
  9. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    A $1,000 voucher of the price of a car isn't worth much. Hell, they are gonna come down $3,000 or so anyway from the list price so what's to make someone think they are getting anything with that voucher?

    Still wouldn't take it, but car dealer guy probably hands them out like peppermints.
  10. What Deadline

    What Deadline New Member

    First off, thanks for the feedback.

    But I don't think your analogy fits. You are comparing apples to oranges. In the above scenario, the newspaper is presumably covering a news event, i.e. a football game. The magazine cover story, however, was a profile piece. I naturally wouldn't have a problem if the magazine had accepted free tickets to write a review of the concert. But the story wasn't a critical review of a show or musical offering. It was a feature about how he was from Main Street, USA.
  11. Mediator

    Mediator Member

    You don't get tickets to write a review, you get a press pass. If you need to see Performer X in concert again, apply for another press pass. Tickets for you and your wife to go cheer in the front row, well that's a little different isn't it? And that's where the tickets to sporting events compare -- If you go and start clapping for the team you cover or an artist you will profile again in the future, it should make you queasy.
  12. Stitch

    Stitch Active Member

    It's called advocacy journalism and some would say it's the highest calling. /crossthread
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