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“Newspaper” has zero “journalistic ethics”

jpozners Icon Posted by Jennifer L Pozner

June 15th, 2006

Having the Murdoch-owned NY Post as one of my hometown papers, I’ve always considered the tabloid a “newspaper,” not a newspaper. Today, that impression was underscored by the rag’s own fun-with-quotation-marks, in a headline about the sexual assault of a teenager:

TV-REPAIR FIEND ‘RAPES’ TEEN

A headline like that conjures the usual blame-the-victim tropes running through coverage of rape — I expected to read a story dismissing as trivial the alleged assault of a woman by an acquaintance or by a by a well-respected “pillar of the community,” or possibly a piece about the evils of statutory rape laws.

Had the rape in question fallen into either of those categories, the headline would still have been wildly inappropriate. Yet the alleged assault described as “rape” by the Post was one in which — as they reported — a stranger enters a teenager’s home ostensibly to fix her television, rapes her, and shortly thereafter is arrested and “charged with first-degree rape and criminal sexual act.”

Even for an anti-feminist rag like the Post, this is low.

If you’d like to send a letter to the “editor” reminding them what is and is not appropriate journalistic conduct for even the most sensationalistic “newspaper,” you can do so online, or email letters@nypost.com

[Note from WIMN: Remember, letters are taken most seriously when you maintain a polite and firm tone, offer suggestions for better coverage in the future, and refrain from profanity… Feel free to BCC info[AT]wimnonline[dot]org with your letters.]

Thanks to Deanna Zandt for calling our attention to this piece.

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