Identifying Sources

Should news outlets identify a source quoted in a story as being female or a minority even if the source’s race or sex has no bearing on the story? Why or why not? Does having women and minority sources improve the quality of news?

Personally, I think it’s not necessary to share that information unless it’s actually pertinent to the news that’s being reported. If the article, or broadcast, is about life as a single mother, for example, it would make sense that those sources contacted for contribution understand what that life entails. Statistics provided from a man would not support the story in the same way. The same goes for minorities. If a special report is produced on the impact of racism in America, an all-white opinionated news report would honestly be viewed in a sour light. Journalistic credibility could be questioned in these instances.

“If people in the media cannot decide whether they are in the business of reporting news or manufacturing propaganda, it is all the more important that the public understand that difference, and choose their news sources accordingly.” -Thomas Sowell


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