JOUR 318: Media Law and Ethics and Diversity

This course is intended to empower you with the tools and knowledge to work through sticky ethical dilemmas, understand how the lack of diversity in newsrooms can prevent equitable coverage of marginalized communities and to empower you with the fundamentals of American media law that will enable you to understand and evaluate legal conflicts and ethical dilemmas in your personal and professional lives. This course will help you communicate ethically, equitably, effectively and – hopefully – without getting sued. The idea is to provide information that is theoretical yet practical. You are likely going to make decisions that result in harm no matter what you do, so you might as well be able to figure out how to make a decision that you can live with and explain, not just roll with knee-jerk reactions. Media practitioners, who wield great power in society through news stories, advertisements and press releases, must go beyond mere gut reactions in making decisions that affect people’s lives, particularly for those who are disadvantaged and without voice. This course will help you do that.