journalism and society

Journalism and Society P1, P2 and M1

people walking on paved road
  • News and Case Study

News definitions:

  1. A report of recent events
  2. Previously unknown information
  3. Material reported in a newspaper or newscast

News is information surrounding current events that informs the public, either written or orally. This can be carried out through citizen journalism, or professional journalism. (E.g. through a news presenter).

Letters to the Editor: Religion has no right to force itself on schoolkids – The Irish Examiner

Title in itself brings a negative image of religion by using word “force” – could offend those who take time and care to teach about subject and don’t believe they’re being forceful.

“The church had a distorted view of sexuality that seemed obsessive” – The Irish Times

Although I believe this to be true, I can imagine some of those passionate about the church to argue with this as they believe it as a personal attack on them (reminds me of “not all men” mentality)

“It seems that we may have been good Catholics, but we were not such good Christians” ” Bishop of Achrony Paul Dempsey

Blurred line between meanings of both? Not sure if particularly “sensitive”, but definitely confusing.

The sketch, which was part of the broadcaster’s New Year’s Eve countdown show, portrayed a mock news report in which God was arrested for sexual harassment.” – NI Humanists on RTE sketch

The sketch centers around blasphemy, which is a criminal offence in NI and came across as hugely intensive to viewers to see God in such a distasteful light.

Previous Article

‘”So-called” homes” – Some may debate that regardless of the ongoings in mother and baby homes, their name is their name.

journalism and society


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The Right to Privacy


  1. The right to privacy refers to the concept that one’s personal information is protected from public scrutiny. 
  2. The right of a person to be free from intrusion into or publicity concerning matters of a personal nature.

The right to privacy is the necessity of being able to keep certain aspects of your life away from the public eye.

  1. Freedom of the press—the right to report news or circulate opinion without censorship from the government.
  2. The right to publish newspapers, magazines, and other printed matter without governmental restriction and subject only to the laws of libel, obscenity, sedition, etc.

Freedom of Press refers to the right to publish or release relevant information to the public.

Case Studies

  1. The woman’s complaint about health and safety regarding the sauna had nothing whatsoever to do with ‘security’ issues. It was entirely inappropriate for the data controller to reveal cctv footage, while also bringing other individuals into it, which was obtained for ‘security’ purposes, to attempt to deal with this matter.  
  2. The inspection found that mobile phone numbers were collected when patrons of the club filled out a form that was passed around on given nights.
  1. Freedom of Press was justified by West Wood Club using their security footage in order to fully investigate their complaint.
  2. Freedom of Press was justified by the fact that those who went to the club willingly gave their details – however, it is unclear from the case study what they were told they would be used for.

From reading both case studies, I believe in both situations that those who made the complaint were in the right from an ethical point of view, as privacy was breached both times.


Journalism and Society P3, P4

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News and case study

Story Topic: GameStop Stock Shares

  • “Bankers targeting a company to short it i.e destroy it should be banned….not the normal guy who is against it.” – The Sun

This comment is against the idea of those who work with money should not be contributing to these shares, as ultimately it will destroy the company.

  • “Another article that doesn’t tell the truth that the real reason is because hedge funds illegally shorted GameStop 140%” – The Independent

Again, this person is not happy with the level of shares arising in GameStop. They don’t think the media is telling the full truth, and believe the occurrences are illegal and ultimately going to end in failure.

  • “I’m a terribly simple soul I know…. but in my view selling something that not only is not yours to sell but, in fact, doesn’t exist, on the hope you can buy it back cheaper later is…. what’s the word…. fraud? Yes that’s it… it’s fraud.” – BBC

This comment is blunt with their beliefs. They insist that this is fraudulent behavior.

  • All articles surrounding the recent soar in GameStop Stock Shares including comments following one common theme – skepticism.
  • The majority of The Sun, The Independent and BBC’s reader’s appear to believe that the trend of investing your money into the stock market surrounds itself with fraudulent activity.
  • I get the feeling from the comments that the reason they went as far as commenting was down to the purpose of wanting to raise awareness.

Journalism and Society P5, P6, M3

Gatekeeping and News Selection

Gatekeeping is the act of someone taking control of who has access to certain information. This can be news related, community based or relating to your identity.

Gatekeeping can relate to some people believing they have a right to be the only people that have access to this.

Demographic: 16-19 year olds.

“Flooding in Cork, Kerry and other areas amid rain and wind warnings”

Relevant for those who live in these areas and need to travel etc.

“Donnelly clarifies remarks on school re-opening after earlier saying union talks remained outgoing”

Relevant as this age category may still be in secondary school

“Ireland is getting a new covid roadmap, but what’s happening in other countries now?”

Relevant to contributing to young people’s social life.

“Coronavirus – one death and 686 new cases confirmed in Ireland”

Links in with roadmap, again relating to young people’s social life.

“Screen Watch: your guide to the best TV movies this week”

As we are in lockdown, many young people rely on TV for entertainment.

journalism and society

Journalism and Society P3, P4, M2

Checks and Balances

374/2020 – A Family and The Irish Times

The Irish Times released an article surrounding those who have passed from the Corona Virus. The article named four patients who had passed.

The child of one of those who had passed wrote to the paper. They stated that they had not given permission for their mother’s name to be used and that they “had every legitimate expectation to believe that our mother’s medical details, including her name, would not become public property”. They added that the article was “deeply distressing” to those close to her.

The family complained to the Office of the Press Ombudsman that Principle 5 of the Code of Practice had been broken.

The times we are living in are difficult enough without the media being insensitive to those effected in such a horrible way. A journalist should never be insensitive in their work for the sake of making a story more “interesting”. If this were to happen again, the paper should respect the family’s privacy during the difficult time and ensure they had full permission of the family to speak on their lost loved one.

582/2020 – A Woman and the Sunday World

The Sunday World released an article about the location of a man that had only recently released from prison, after being accused of sexually assaulting his wife’s daughters. A photograph of the man was released into the press, which included an image of his house and his wife. The wife’s identity was hidden by her being pixelated. The woman claims that the paper had also written lies about her regarding CCTV footage installed in her home.

When the woman contacted the Sunday World, they left her no response. She had to take the issue further to the Press Council.

From a journalistic perspective, the paper obviously should have acknowledged the woman’s concerns, as disregard for this reflects badly upon the paper once taken further. It was unnecessary for the Sunday World to bring the woman’s business into the article, as it was the man the public were concerned with.

375/2020 – A Woman and The Southern Star

The Southern Star released an article on a court case in which the complainant faced several charges. The newspaper stated that a woman was ordered to pay a fine to the court charity but had her charges dropped under the Probation Act.

The woman complained that there were a number of inaccuracies in the court report and called on the newspaper to apologise for their actions. She said the title of the article was false, she had not been arrested, she had not been charged with reckless driving, she had not been charged with threatening and abusive behavior and that she had not refused to make a statement.

It is important for a journalist to get the full story when reporting on a court case. Twisting the story to create a dramatic feel is never the way to go. This would highlight to journalists the importance of telling the truth when it comes to their writing.

journalism and society

Journalism And Society P1, P2, M1

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News Ownership and Media Imperialism

Media Imperialism is the influence of mass-media upon different customs and cultures, unintentionally causing erasure of identity. An example of this would be a catchphrase being used in an American TV show beginning to become popular in smaller nations, such as Ireland.


PewDiePie is Swedish but uses American sounding phrases such as “frickin'” and “dudes”. As his videos progress, he develops an American accent – assumingly naturally, but this accent influences his 109 million subscribers to do the same.

His videos cut to mass-produced American video games, which cause a knock on effect of media imperialism.

Audience interaction – Starts nearly all videos with “Hey, what’s up bros? It’s PewDiePie.”

Like Nastya

“Like Nastya” is a young Russian girl, but uses an American accent while on camera and features American Franchise in her videos (e.g. Disney). This is a similar situation to PewDiePie, who also does the same. However, Nastya’s father features in many of her videos, which he occasionally speaks in his native language. “Like Nastya” is aimed at a younger generation, who are more easily influenced by the media.


P5 Primary


P5 Secondary to Primary

NameJobLocationContactsAsk aboutY/N
Aoife McLysaghtTCD Professor of +353 1896 3161, +353 1896 3161,2,3 As you are in close contact with young people, do you think the schools are playing a major role in Covid-19 transmission?Y
Yellow Vest IrelandOrganized anti-mask protestsDublinYellow Vest Ireland – Facebook Messenger Yellow Vest Ireland – TwitterDo you see more older or younger people attending your anti-mask protests? Is it a significant age gap? Why do you think that is? Have you spoken with young people who share your beliefs? What did they say? 
Health Freedom IrelandOrganized anti-mask Facebook – Health Freedom Ireland Twitter- Health Freedom Ireland^^^^^^^^^ 
David HanlonClinical advisor to HSEDublinTwitter – @drdhanlon1,2,3 
PAHO/WHOUN Health AgencyAmericaTwitter – @pahowho1,2,3 
Dr. Tony HolohanChief Medical OfficerDublinTwitter – @CMOIreland1,2,3,4 
Tony RyanGuard Dublin Email – PressOffice@garda.ieAsk about calls about gatherings 
Kate NgReporter @ IndependentLondonTwitter – @etaKateakate1,2,3,4 
Craig FitzSimonsHotpress Journalist Craigey L Fitz – FB Anti-Mask  


  1. Do you believe the Covid-19 blame in young people is justified?
  2. What has your experience been with young people around you regarding complacency?
  3. Is there a figure/statistic you can provide me with surrounding young people’s coronavirus transmission?
  4. Do you think schools opening is having an impact?
individual project

P2 Gather Research

1. Stand With Sophie

“A video is trending depicting a young girl from Texas named Sophie who alleges that her stepfather is abusing her. The heartbreaking clip sees Sophie screaming and alleging abuse against her mom’s new fiancé. The video, which has gone viral on social media, shows a little girl named Sophie claiming that she has suffered abuse at the hands of her stepfather in her mother’s home. Speaking to her grandmother in the video, Sophie refuses to leave a car she is sat in during a custody exchange. The footage then went viral, inspiring the social media campaign Stand with Sophie.” –

In this shocking viral video, we see citizen journalism being used as a voice for a young girl where no one around her will listen.

GoFundMe raised $210,622 out of a $25,000 goal in one month. 9,298 people contributed.

2. The Murder of George Floyd

“A video taken by an onlooker Monday evening shows a Minneapolis police officer keeping his knee on the neck of a motionless, moaning man at the foot of a squad car. The man, who was later identified as George Floyd, later died.”

“We all watched the horrific death of George Floyd on video as witnesses begged the police officer to take him into the police car and get off his neck,” Crump said in a statement. “This abusive, excessive and inhumane use of force cost the life of a man who was being detained by the police for questioning about a non-violent charge.”

A piece of citizen journalism that lead to protests around the world, highlighting police brutality against black people that had gone on for long enough

.George Floyd: 10 things that have changed since his death – BBC News

3. Beirut Explosion

The disaster was preceded by a large fire at the Port of Beirut, on the city’s northern Mediterranean coast. In videos posted on social media white smoke could be seen billowing from Warehouse 12, next to the port’s huge grain silos.

Shortly after 18:00 (15:00 GMT), the roof of the warehouse caught alight and there was a large initial explosion, followed by a series of smaller blasts that some witnesses said sounded like fireworks going off.

If this had been spoken about by mainstream media, I strongly believe less people would have paid as much attention to it as they did when it was streamed as citizen journalism.

13 October Research 2

Citizen journalism involves private individuals, who are normally the consumers of journalism, generating their own news content. Citizens collect, report, analyze, and disseminate news and information, just as professional journalists would, creating what is known as user-generated content.

These amateur journalists produce news in many forms, ranging from a podcast editorial to a report about a city council meeting on a blog, and is usually digital in nature. It can also include text, pictures, audio, and video. Social media plays a major role in disseminating news and promoting citizen journalism content. These people get the stories out quicker than traditional news reporters – Understanding Citizen Journalism, Thoughtco

CHANGE OF ANGLE – A call on Human Rights

Irish example – Research and pick one

Video of 2 women smashing bottle over innocent man , Septemeber 10th 2020 (Mirror)

Irish woman’s account of domestic abuse goes Viral (Santry Woman, Irish Times 2015)

What is Coercive Control and why is it now a legal offence? (

Shannon Byrne on being a homeless mother during a pandemic –

investigative journalism

Formative: 5 Things

  • 1. When I conducted my secondary research, I encountered several challenges.
  • Firstly, I began to question if I had made the right choice regarding my story topic. As my topic is relevant in media currently, there was plenty of general articles to do with it. However, I couldn’t quite find enough information regarding the more specific elements I wanted to cover. After investing more time into my research, I found articles of great use to me.
  • Secondly, a challenge I encountered was making sure I was getting my secondary research from a reliable news source. I did this by using trusted newspapers (e.g. The Guardian, The Independent) when researching articles, or recognized sites to provide statistics (e.g. CSO, HSE).
  • The third challenge was making sure the secondary research I collected stayed relevant to the topics I wanted to cover in my piece. This meant I had to stay focused when working, making sure everything tied in together.

2. Three things the contact sheet and contacting progress have taught me:

  • How to formally contact people you’re interested in speaking to, maintaining a balance between being polite but not dull with your language. As well as something to help you with contacts, this is also a valuable life skill to possess.
  • People are willing to help you with your work, even if you don’t expect a response or get one straight away. Contacting people with a broad understanding of your topic tends to flow the best, as you can ask them a set amount of questions without them struggling to speak on it. Journalist’s tend to be eager to help aspiring journalists, so these are a safe bet to contact.
  • Structuring a clear contact sheet is useful when it comes to being organized. Being able to see all your contacts details (such as their name, location and phone number/email) makes the process of getting in touch more efficient.

3. I don’t think it’s possible to research efficiently using only secondary research. Taking information from other people’s work can only teach you so much – talking to people directly about it is what helps you truly learn and understand your topic. However, secondary research also has a lot to it, and can be a great help while looking for information on your piece.

4. If a contact provides me with information that shows a person or organization in a bad light, I work around mentioning their name(s) so not to upset them. If I decided I wanted to name them anyway, this could land me in trouble with defamation. Defamation is oral or written communication that harms the reputation of a person or company, and making such a statement could backfire more than it’s worth. It’s safer to indirectly describe the type of person or company, but you must be careful that you don’t get into specifics where they can be easily identified.

5. Jim Lehrer’s rules that apply to my work

2. Do not distort, lie, slant or hype.

This rule is relevant to when you collect research. It’s important that you use verified information when adding to your piece, and tell the facts as they are. You should not twist or make up any information to make your piece seem “better”. Spreading disinformation will make your work less credible, and contacts will hesitate to work with you in the future if you are known for doing this.

10. Carefully separate opinion and analysis from straight news stories and clearly label them as such.

This is relevant to my topic, as there is plenty of opinion surrounding Covid-19 and young people. One of the reasons I chose to write about this was to separate fact from opinion, as the media can get this blurred frequently. Between conspiracy theories and general speculation, people have a lot to say about this subject, so it’s important for me to be able to differentiate between the two, and clearly state as such.