I don't hate Slasher, and I don't think what he did is unethical. It is a fair argument to say journalists should not withhold stories because reporting is their duty. I see a lot of arguments out there, but surprisingly I don't see many resembling my thoughts on the situation. I figured it would be good to put my thoughts out there.
I've talked to Slasher about these things yesterday and he is both understanding as well as receptive to the arguments provided.
My view is not about the ethics or the morality of the situation, I don't believe these need to be part of the discussion. I have my own reasons for minding Slasher leaking our announcements to the public, not necessarily in line with what was said on Lo3. I am not upset over this, I am not stressed over it, and I certainly don't hate Slasher. Unfortunately, I internally deal with things on a regular basis that are much more stressful and impactful to my organization. Still, I find it an interesting case to talk about and believe I can add something to the discussion at hand.
My argument is based around relationship management. I see many people looking at other sports for the ethical justification of journalists leaking information. I agree with you there. I want to take a look at other sports as well. If you are an investigating journalist in another sport you will often find yourself being friends with a player. This player can provide you with information on his teammates, management, sponsors, club, atmosphere, and more. For as long as the journalist does not screw over his source he may benefit from this relationship. If he does screw him, the relationship is over and he has lost his connection.
Slasher on the one hand wants to use Liquid for information supply, as well as work with us officially on interviews and other content. Yet, on the other hand he will look for leaks outside of my organization that will impact me negatively upon releasing the information. I view this as poor relationship management. I don't think it works like that anywhere, neither here nor in other sports.
I enjoy Slasher's company, and I don't mind sitting down with him for a beer outside of all of this, but in the end it comes down to being capable of separating my business relationships from a personal like or dislike for his character. If he does these things, that again are ethically entirely acceptable, then our business relation will be in a poor condition. If he picks which one he wants to be doing, I will blame him for neither, but trying to do both makes it very difficult.
Last edit: 2013-01-17 19:40:35
Avokodo South Africa. January 17 2013 19:39. Posts 80
I think a lot of this is true: I'm glad you are not focused on ambiguous ideas such as "ethics" in this realistic situation.
But what about in cases in which the journalist does not get his information from the source that the information is about? Like if other teams were bidding on Snute, and one of those teams told him? What would this mean for a relationship between the journalist and the tema?
LakseWim Netherlands. January 17 2013 19:42. Posts 149
Journalism is about give and take. "Finding the balance". It's something that no one should take personally, or get outraged about.
Teams should never expect journalists to give themselves up to them fully - but on the flip side, journalists should not excessively take away from or piss off the teams, else they risk burning bridges. Going public with leaks is part of a journalist's job (especially if there's significant public interest) and as long as they understand teams will probably be miffed about it, then it's all good.
There would be situations where a journalist has a weak relationship with a team and there might be zero incentive for the journalist to "hold back", so to speak. Teams in this position would be wise to *build* a relationship here; offering interview opportunities in exchange for agreeing to an embargo, for example.
At the end of the day, journalists need teams and teams need journalists. As such, you can't really have one-sided relationships.
Props to Nazgul for him actually speaking his mind too - rather than letting others speak for him.
Last edit: 2013-01-17 19:56:21
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Martijn Netherlands. January 17 2013 19:47. Posts 1101
So is the argument that publishing information obtained through friendship ruins said friendship or is the argument that publishing information that negatively impacts the team makes him a bad friend to the team?
Because I can understand that someone would feel used if they were unwillingly used as a source under the guise of friendship, you'd feel betrayed. But I find it hard to relate to a stance that implies "if you leak something that hurts my business I'll blackball you". There's obviously a middle ground here somewhere, how do you figure?
On January 17 2013 19:55 reapsen wrote: Is there any summary of all this? I have to work alot, so i can't watch 2 hours of LO3 or whatnot.
Some short overview of what happend would be much appreciated.
There was a debate on LO3 between Slasher and Alex Garfield regarding whether or not Slasher should constantly leak information he finds out about. One side says that it's Slasher's job to do so as a journalist, the other side says its very harmful to teams to depend on hype to general page views and attention as well as the fact that Slasher can still get the same story if he had patience.
Completely agree. Personally i felt this consequence wasn't really the issue. I thought more about the ethical side of things, as Nazgul mentioned. Nazgul's view is more practical, and a useful complement to the current situation (no restrictions whatsoever). Once you (as a representative of a company or whatever) talk to a journalist, the amount of trust on either side determines how much information is presented, and how much is leaked. If both parties trust eachother greatly, then there will be secrets revealed to the journalist, who will be expected to keep them to himself, by the representative. Is there no trust at all, nothing will be revealed and thus, nothing leaked. One can guess how the other 2 will play out. What happened here was that information was given to slasher; he was expected to not leak it, but he did. What consequences will this have? Above mentioned combinations of trust are in equilibrium. A leak as big as this one is a significant disturbance in this equilibrium. As said in the blog, would slasher be doing this again, people will reconsider their relation with him as a journalist, making him less relevant, because of a lack of trust.
This is somewhat of a metaphysical story, but i think this is kind of how it works. and, this is almost exactly what nazgul said, but rearranged and in a bit more general terms :')
Your stance is natural in your position. If something is impacting you negative you will try to minimize the expose.
I also think you can understand the community (large part) wishes that a journalist should not be too afraid to report something that might impact a team negatively because then he will be cut off.
I rather have a journalist with no direct access to teams that are able to report things that will be negative for the teams then a journalist with great access to the teams that only writes things with no negative impact.
Good to see that the owner of my favorite team understands that matters like these are not handled in public. And it kinda sucks if your name is dragged into drama like this so I understand the reason for this post. Nevertheless I personally think it's best in cases like this to not do or say anything at all. You know, be an invisible wraith.