Problem: How does a reporter cover himself?

By Glenn Judah

News becoming news. That just doesn’t make sense. Well, that’s what happened on Sept. 21.
That day professors, students and even a president would become figureheads for the different meanings of journalism. They would appear on the local television news to talk about censorship concerning an article in The Gargoyle, which caused the momentary disposal of its first issue this semester.

On Sept. 20, like most of my days, I asked the questions and reported the news as the Co-Editor of The Gargoyle. The next day, I was the very news I usually cover, question and report. In my communication classes, where I am taught the meaning of news, the lesson plans were changed to discuss what I do, where I work and what it means. I don’t mean to boast and brag Flagler College, but suddenly I was popular.

My fellow communication students were even given a homework assignment to cover the “censorship” situation with The Gargoyle. I sat in my Electronic News class to hear Rob Armstrong, my professor, read story leads with my name.

“Glenn Judah is not a happy camper,” read Armstrong.

If it was up to me, instead of being part of the lesson plan, I would have rather raised my hand for attendance then quietly blended into the background of COM1 and L-311. That did not happen.
I had a dilemma. When the very news source I work for, The Gargoyle, becomes the news, how can I objectively report on it, without sounding biased in favor of the paper? Can I do any form of reporting whatsoever?

The conflict of interest of Sept. 21 will stick with me for the rest of my journalistic career. I hope to look back and laugh at when I was on Channel 12, in The Florida Times-Union and in student homework assignments. I was commended for my ability to recognize there was a conflict. Sadly, Armstrong did not give me any extra credit.

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