Good News, Bad News: Journalism Ethics and the Public Interest

By Jeremy Iggers | Go to book overview

Acknowledgments

I believe it was Mark Twain who said that he didn't care where he spent eternity, because he had "friends in both places," Having had the opportunity to work for newspapers while pursuing a doctorate in philosophy, I feel the same way. Without making the analogy too specific, I can say that this book would not have been possible without a lot of help and encouragement from friends in both places.

This book has its origins in my doctoral dissertation, written for the philosophy department at the University of Minnesota, and I am especially indebted to the members of my dissertation committee: Michael Root, Gene Mason, Charles Sugnet, Ted Glasser, and my advisor, Doug Lewis.

My own ideas about public journalism and the public responsibilities of journalists developed as a result of having the opportunity to put some of them into practice at the Star Tribune ( Minneapolis--St. Paul). I have long believed that the best work in ethics comes out of dialogue, and when I wrote ethics columns for the Star Tribune, I was eager to find ways to engage readers in dialogue about the issues I explored.

The eventual result was a proposal to create Minnesota's Talking, a statewide network of public issues discussion groups. I am grateful to Linda Picone, former deputy managing editor, for supporting the proposal and giving it the resources it needed to become a reality. I also thank everyone else who contributed to its success: Liz McConnell, who edited the stories; Judy Atrubin, who capably managed the day-to-day operation of the project; and the many other colleagues who contributed time, effort, and expertise. The discussion materials and expertise provided by the Kettering Foundation and the Study Circles Resource Center were invaluable to the project and greatly enriched my own understanding of public deliberation.

My debt to Jay Rosen is profound. Having the opportunity to participate in the workshops of the Project on Public Life and the Press has

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