Staff Editorial – Audrey Otwell
Truth is the quintessential lifeblood amongst a convoluted web of falsehoods and uncertainty. As journalists, your Network staff, your classmates, your friends, your peers, and we have embarked on the noble pursuit of verity. We want our readers to be intrigued by our writing, excited about our reports and challenged by the prospect of what is to come. We want to tell fascinating tales of peculiar events, and we crave to share a multitude of human experience.
But most of all, we want our stories to be true. We took a personal vow to truth; we want our stories to elicit laughter, triumph and action in an ethical manner.
Whether you watch C-Span like it is your job or don’t quite recall what a congressman is, you have likely heard the phrase “fake news,” referring to falsely reported stories and fabricated facts that support some kind of yellow journalistic efforts. You may hear “fake news” and roll your eyes, but the current political climate and the tensions that ensue mean that there is a big battle brewing for reporters. This recent backlash against all journalistic media is the war on the press.
Misreporting does not run rampant, and the media bias is not equivalent to “fake news,” nor is unfavorable news that brings misdeeds to light. So often, the brutal term “fake news” is thrown at those who report the truth. The question presents itself: how are journalists supposed to tell the truth under fire? When each story can be undermined and disregarded under a pretense of fake news, the truth is thrown to the wind. A true journalist’s intention is not malicious; without journalism, the public would be blind to everything political, social, and necessary. Journalism’s purity is under siege, and grenades and bullets take the form of accusations and denial. Not all news is agreeable and enjoyable, and that is how it must be. We are not the enemy of the people because we report stories that you consider unfavorable.
Journalism’s very essence is being called to question as fact is called “fake” and media is considered increasingly unreliable. So we, the Network staff, would like to reiterate what it means to be journalists. True journalism, in all shapes and forms, is the diligent work of investigative discovery and poignant reflection. Reporters intend to relay only what is certifiably true. In doing so, we serve as our reader’s objective sense of time, place and purpose.
Believe in good journalism; trust your reporters. We are here for the truth, and we are here for the people behind the stories. We are here for you.