Accountability in journalism

Journal of Mass Media Ethics 18 (1):16 – 28 (2003)
This article, written by a former justice of the Supreme Court of India and chairman of the Press Council of India, describes the media accountability system in India and argues for the global necessity for such systems. It declares the need for free press systems for the survival of democratic institutions and claims that society has an obligation to monitor media systems so they remain free. The alternative will be government regulation, which will suspend the vital characteristics of a free press. A press council, on the other hand, can work more cooperatively with the press to assure responsibility. Global forces make it important for the mass media to explore the virtues inherent in media accountability systems, such as press councils. This article suggests why those systems are increasingly important, proposes structures and functions for such councils, and uses the Press Council of India as an example of a working organization.
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