Some time ago I wrote to you over your advocating unsound treatments in reporting fund-raising efforts.
I now find myself writing again on much the same issue, this time regards your advocating unsound services. The issues are so similar I find myself drawing on my earlier words.
Please, when you decide to ‘advocate’ for a service, check that it is sound.
Articles about services offering hope of treating illness no doubt sell copy, but with that comes responsibility.
These articles, with their details of how to contact the service provider at the bottom, effectively advocate the service to the reader.
Sure, you could argue whether the treatment is sound is for the reader to judge before giving them their money – but wouldn’t that be newspapers shirking their moral responsibilities?
If you put down details of the service in the article you’re effectively putting your weight behind it.
Editors, like most people, will be aware that articles in the press carry some weight of creditability, rightly or wrongly. There will be an expectation among many that the media has checked ‘the facts’.
It seems to me either that this checking should done, and done properly, or the advocacy dropped.
My brief missive here follows from an article espousing the services of an iridologist published yesterday in the New Zealand Herald that was brought to my attention by my colleagues.
Even the briefest of background research would have revealed that iridology is nonsense. Quaint, well-meaning nonsense, perhaps, but nonsense nevertheless.