Monday, January 24, 2011

Reflection No. 1 – Oh Sher Li

 1. Based on your understanding of facts and opinions, why do you think this is important for a journalist/ reporter in the world of online news reporting?
Journalists have to know the importance of reporting accurate information and not including their opinions on the subject. This is to prevent hassle and uproar regarding the article’s reliability. 
Journalists should also be able to differentiate the facts and opinions from the articles and resources they are referring to. This is to ensure the accuracy and consistency of the article they are writing. 
If a piece of writing is heavily opinionated or includes false or unverified information, readers may not “believe” the article, and issues may be raised of the article’s validity. Therefore, the writer should write and article where the information is verified and contains no opinions, so as not to offend another party or raise validity issues.
2. How can some of the problems raised in the articles be controlled?
Before an article is published on the Internet, it should be written out and edited, and information should be verified if necessary. This will prevent the article from being leaked before the information is verified or before the article is ready to be published. Websites and hyperlinks should also be reviewed before being referenced in the article, to ensure that there is no opinionated content. 
   Writers should also understand that once an article is published onto the World Wide Web, it is available to everyone on the Internet and the information will be able to spread to all corners of the globe. Although posting on the Internet ensures the quick spreading of information, it also raises the question of accuracy. The writer can overcome this by looking through the information and editing the article several times before publishing, to check for mistakes or opinion.
3. What are some responsibilities of discerning readers?
The responsibilities of discerning readers include being able to differentiate the facts from opinions in an article and referring only from the facts stated in the article. They should also read only articles published from reliable websites and avoid articles from unreliable websites or which were published prematurely (before the information is verified or before it is supposed to be published). 
Readers should also check with other reliable sources about the validity of information should they feel that the information is suspicious or questionable. Corroborating the information not only confirms the content’s accuracy, but in the process, the reader may gain more information on the subject.

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