Question: A reporter is on an assignment with a photographer who enters a house without permission and photographs the sale of illegal drugs. Should the reporter publish the photos?
According to my perception, the reporter should not publish the photos that enter a house without permission and photographs of the sale of illegal drugs. Firstly, the reporter didn’t have the permission of the house owner to enter the house or take photographs. As a person, the reporter should realize that entering into someone’s house sneakily is unethical, wrongdoing.
Secondly, as a responsible citizen of a nation, he must abide by some rules; he can’t do such things as trespassing. It is one kind of crime to do trespassing (Gillespie, n.d.). Only police can get into the house that too with a search warrant. The reporter could be punished for entering the house without taking permission. Finally, a reporter just cannot publish the photographs whatever he wants to publish (Wang & Redwood-Jones, 2001). The reporter can face many problems because of his foolish activities. For example, the house owner can file a defamation case against the publishing company. People will not accept such publishing that collected in the wrong ways. Even, the company can be got into legal issues if the publishing company allows the reporter. If he does something like this without a higher authority concern, the reporter can be fired from a job. He can be arrested if the house owner complaints against him for breaking into his house.
For example: In 2002, on 5 March, a Pennsylvania reporter named Andrew Broman was arrested, charged with misdemeanor criminal trespassing for refusing to leave the private property while seeking the information at a nonprofit agency.
So, it is very safe to say that trespassing is a criminal offense and reporters are not allowed to seek information in this way. And the information gathered in these ways is also not allowed for publishing for any publishers. Therefore, the reporter should not publish the photos, let alone publishing he also should not collect photographs or information in these illegal ways.
Gillespie, J.,(n.d.) Criminal Trespassing Law. Retrieved from https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/criminal-trespassing-law.html
Wang, C. C., & Redwood-Jones, Y. A. (2001). Photovoice ethics: Perspectives from Flint photovoice. Health education & behavior, 28(5), 560-572.
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