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Ethics

Facebook Is Seeking “Editors” for News App

ImageFor years, Facebook has sworn by the power of algorithms to serve users a personalized mix of status updates, stories and photos. It's what makes up the heart of the company's premier product, the News Feed. Soon, Facebook will add another approach to delivering the news: Via a new app, humans working for Facebook will start telling you which news stories you should be reading. Over the past few months, Facebook has sought to hire contract editors to staff up Paper, the company's unreleased, Flipboard-like news aggregation mobile app, according to two people familiar with the matter.

Report: 70 journalists killed on the job in 2013

ImageAt least 70 journalists were killed on the job around the world in 2013, including 29 who died covering the civil war in Syria and 10 slain in Iraq, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. The dead in Syria included a number of citizen journalists working to document combat in their home cities, broadcasters who worked with media outlets affiliated with either the government or the opposition, and a handful of correspondents for the foreign press, including an Al-Jazeera reporter, Mohamed al-Mesalma, who was shot by a sniper. Six journalists died in Egypt. Half of those reporters were killed while reporting an Aug. 14 crackdown by Egyptian security forces on demonstrators protesting the ouster of President Mohamed Morsi.

Journalism Schools Ask Federal Government to Allow Use of Flying Drones for News Reporting

ImageDrone Journalism Programs at the University of Missouri and the University of Nebraska, which received cease and desist orders from the Federal Aviation Administration last month, are now hopeful they can deploy small, unmanned aircraft for reporting such stories as natural disasters. Both programs were created to teach journalism students how to use drones in their news reporting. Each has applied for permits so they can resume operating the unmanned aircraft outdoors, the Chronicle for Higher Education reported last week. Both programs received the cease-and-desist letters from the FAA.

Firing of Alabama Reporter for Her Blog Demonstrates a Disconnect in Today's Newsrooms

ImageA young reporter working for an Alabama television station was recently fired for revealing too much information on her personal blog. The story, though missing some details, says a lot about today's news business. Shea Allen, the 20-something female reporter fired, wrote a blog called "Confessions of a Red Headed Reporter" and did some personal YouTube videos. She was quickly creating a signature of her own, something her bosses at WAAY-TV, Channel 31, in Huntsville, Alabama couldn't take.

Telling the Truth Is No Longer the Top Priority in Journalism

I graduated debt-free from journalism school in 1968 at a time when there were plenty of jobs and some great opportunities in the news business. I was lucky enough to work at some prestigious news organizations, including United Press International, Post-Newsweek, Gannett and the Miami Herald. In every one of those news jobs, accuracy in reporting was priority number one. At UPI, it was very simple. Make a major error in a story that's released nationally and you were fired. There were no ifs, ands or buts. Rules like that kept you on your toes.

And, We Have Gotten Used to It

ImageOne of Bud Benjamin's dreams was to expand the CBS Evening News to a full hour. And Bud wasn't thinking of filling it with helicopter shots, celebrity gossip and punditry. He imagined an entire hour brimming with investigative reporting, exposés and dispatches from around the world. It was a different time in journalism. A time when professional duty was patriotic, and the freedom of the press motivated and inspired newsrooms. I know it is hard to believe - but it's true - newsrooms were not supposed to turn a profit. Frankly, news was considered an acceptable loss on the balance sheet.

SPJ applauds new checkbook journalism policy

INDIANAPOLIS – The Society of Professional Journalists applauds ABC’s decision to effectively ban checkbook journalism and the backdoor practice of paying "licensing fees" for newsmaker interviews and encourages all news outlets to do the same.