Here are the kinds of ethical dilemmas that confront early career professionals working in media:
- Your boss at a P.R. firm wants you to promote a hip-hop act by going online pretending to be a teenager.
- A graduate of your university wants you to remove an old story from the student newspaper's online archive because it's hurting her job prospects.
- A bar owner says he might finally buy an ad in your publication if you'll just come back tonight and hang out at the bar.
Students may not recognize the ethical implications of a situation at work. Even if they do, and even if their intentions are good, they may not know how to reason through the problem, or what options exist beyond their gut reaction, or where to go for advice from their lowly position in the organization.
Media Ethics at Work: True Stories from Young Professionals helps students assemble a tool kit for dealing with ethical issues on the job. At the heart of the book are 23 cases, true stories of problems encountered by young professionals working in news, advertising and public relations. Each story is presented as a narrative so readers can ponder: "What would I do if this happened to me?" Introductory material provides a foundation in philosophical theory and moral reasoning, so by the time they've finished the book, students will feel prepared with an array of theoretical and practical approaches that will equip them with strategies for thinking on their feet.
Other ethics books focus on the big-name, high-level cases that make news – and hurt media credibility. Media Ethics at Work takes a fresh, new approach, aiming to build integrity in a time of media change through the small and large ethical decisions that entry-level media professionals make every day.