Friday, October 3, 2008


As I was channel surfing, I came across a flick about a journalist who fabricated 27 out of his 41 magazine articles to advance his career. He invented names of people and claimed that they were his sources. He wrote about places that don't even exist and passed them off as actual facts. I was only able to catch the latter part of the film, but for a Mass Communication graduate, it was a bit disturbing for me to watch, especially after finding out that it was based on a true story.

Now, I wonder how many more journalists are like that out there? That's a scary thought. I mean, media is a very influential tool. We all know that. We form our opinions based on what we read on the newspapers or what we see on the 6 o'clock news.

I mean, I know of some cases where the media would slant a certain article or a certain piece of news for the benefit of their sponsors. I've heard about how certain news stories do not reach the public because a certain network or a newspaper is protecting people of higher positions. I'm not saying that's okay, it's definitely not, but fabricating 27 articles? That's another story.

Has this what the world has come to? Are the people of today really willing to sacrifice their own integrity all for 15 minutes of fame? Are we really that apathetic to the world that we are now willing to fool other people, including ourselves, into believing certain things that are not even close to the truth all because we want a Pulitzer or a high-paying job?

In my years with The Scholastican, all I've heard during our journalism seminars are stories about media men getting killed because they've dipped their pens into something they shouldn't have. I've heard of school publications being forced to shut down because they said something against their school or their university. Many men and women have given up their lives all for the price of bringing people facts, hard facts. And for these certain people to fabricate stories, not only is that immoral but it's an insult to all those men and women.

Don't you think it's scary that when reading a newspaper or watching the news, you don't even know which ones are true and which ones are nothing but lies, which ones are slanted and which ones aren't? The truth is, as I've said, the media is very powerful. Basically, it can make you think whatever they want you to think. That's a fact. And now that the media has been penetrated by people who seem to not have a soul, isn't that a little bit scary?

For me it is.