Loyalty. A seven-lettered word that’s meaning is bigger than the word. I really enjoyed the presentation Group 2 gave on loyalty. Some of the concepts and principles brought up kept me thinking and had me really wondering what loyalty is, especially in journalism. When I looked up the definition of loyalty, I found this: a strong feeling of support or allegiance. This leads me to think that not only is the word loyalty a noun, but it is also a verb. Being loyal is an action. We can’t simply say that we are loyal without taking any action. Through our writing, we must show that we are loyal, or supportive, of our audience. It means that we must show faithfulness, commitment, and obligation to our readers.
Group 2 talked about the Watergate scandal and where the loyalty lied in that situation. After that occurrence, journalism became more subjective and judgmental. A great clip on journalism and the Watergate scandal is shown here.
Journalist’s within an organization have many obligations and people to answer to. Amidst all of that, however, we must remember that our allegiance remains to the citizens. The larger public interest is of great importance. By showing such consistent loyalty to the citizens, we prove ourselves and strengthen our reputation by showing them that we are credible and accurate. Through our loyalty, we show that our facts and information aren’t slanted, biased, or influenced. It is important to be credible because our credibility builds a loyal, broad audience. This audience, so long as you remain loyal back to them and verify your facts, will continue coming back. In turn, the audience will continue to grow in size and variety. It is important that we nurture our loyalty to the citizens. I learned a great deal about this from this site.
In an article by Nieman Reports, I learned that what we call loyalty to the citizens has come to be known by the term of journalistic independence. This is the idea that as journalist’s have tried to win over the loyalty from its audience, that the journalist slowly gains independence. It’s an interesting concept that you can read more about here.