Telling True Stories Part VI

Walt Harringtonharringtonwalt_2006_a

Began his journalist career working at the Washington Post for many years and published nine successful novels which can be easily found and purchased on Amazon. One of which, The Everlasting Stream, was made into a PBS Documentary and awarded Harrington with an emmy.

Here is a trailer:


Harrington Is a journalism Professor at the University of Illinois. In his excerpt titled Toward an Ethical Code for Narrative Journalists, in Telling True Stories, Harrington Harrington_Spring2008_250pxexplains that journalists must get their story right.

“journalists claim the right to determine their own ethical relationships”

It is essential to have to common conception between the journalist and subject know what “on” and “off” record means. These are the gray areas every journalist wants to avoid

Harrington runs through questions he goes through before distributing a piece:

  1. Is the story honest?
  2. Is it a true story, not just a factual one?
  3. If the readers learned about it, would they feel deceived

Throughout Harrington’s experience, he has acknowledged that to have an ethical

Retrieved from Google Images

Retrieved from Google Images

piece he needed to be genuine with his subjects for them to be genuie in return. Harrington said,

“If you write narrative journalism and don’t learn things about your subjects that shouldn’t become public, you aren’t a good reporter”

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