Less than two months after the September 11 tragedies, a group of scholars gathered at Washington and Lee University to advance ideas on whether there can be a universal set of moral values toward which media professionals may look for guidance. Those conference scholars, whose works appear in this special issue, both challenge and reinforce conventional wisdom. An entertaining and useful centerpiece launches the discussion, suggesting four standards that tend to be universal, but need discussion to attach themselves to journalism. This is followed by a look at the ambiguity of codes relative to those who use them. In a more abstract approach, the September 11 attacks are seen as creating the need for a commitment to global communitarianism to align powerful western media and the rest of the world. The next article examines the aftermath of a code drafting program for Central American journalists, declaring that long-term effects have been minimal. An excerpt from the keynote speaker concludes the conference texts, citing the relationship between listener and radio and posing the choice for the listener as one between ignorance and freedom.
Volume 17, Number 4, 2003. Contents: Foreword. H. Strentz, Universal Ethical Standards? R. Herrscher, A Universal Code of Journalism Ethics: Problems, Limitations, and Proposals. D.D. Cali, Journalism After September 11: Unity as Moral Imperative. R. Rockwell, The Search for Ethical Journalism in Central America and the Failure of the New Orleans Declaration. K. Klose, Either Ignorance or Freedom. CASES AND COMMENTARIES:The Phoenix and Daniel Pearl. BOOK REVIEWS: A. Borgmann, The Good Life Through Good Works. C. Roush, Scoop Hungry or Market Driven. D. Rubinow, Fish in Water: Life in the Mediated World. D. Rosengard, Mainstream Media: Liberal Agendas Abound.