Moral virtues for journalists

Journal of Mass Media Ethics 22 (2 & 3):168 – 186 (2007)
This essay outlines an account of virtue ethics applied to the profession of journalism. Virtue ethics emphasizes character before consequences, requires the "good" prior to the "right," and allows for agent-relative as well as agent-neutral values. This essay offers an exploration of the internal characteristics of a good journalist by focusing on moral virtues crucial to journalism. First, the essay outlines the general tenets of Aristotelian virtue ethics. Second, it offers arguments touting virtue ethics in comparison with other popular normative theories such as Mill's utilitarianism and Kant's deontology. Finally, an original account of journalistic virtue ethics is offered, with an emphasis on the virtues of justice and integrity.
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