Test your editorial awareness with our news scenarios, which are all based on real situations faced by journalists.
What should a journalist do with off-the-record information? Should they agree to conditions on its use? Should they ignore any conditions and do the story anyway? Or should they use what they have been told as background information and dig further? Try our scenario and decide what you would do in the circumstances.
In this scenario we look at how a journalist should act when they witness a tragedy unfolding and have to decide whether to help, or to stand by and report. The scenario also looks at how senior editorial managers could, and probably should, support their journalists working in difficult conditions.
You are a political broadcast journalist and are invited to speak at public event where the organisers want you to explain the role of the journalist in covering elections. After the event they offer you a gift, and ask whether you would be prepared to do some media training for politicians. What do you do?
Try our scenario on how to remain objective when reporting from a live event. It's about how to avoid 'heat of the moment' language and stick to facts.
Journalists often come under pressure with threats of legal action if they don't publish or broadcast what others want. In this scenario we look at a scenario where a reporter is sent a cease and desist letter and told legal action will be taken against them if they don't add 'positive-spin' to an article.
Scenario: There has been a strike at a steel works. The union claims all its 100,000 members were out on strike, but the employer says 50% turned up for work and defied the picket line. You were reporting from the main gates of the steel plant all day and you didn't see anyone crossing the picket line. What do you report?
In this scenario we discuss whether it is every justified for a journalist to trespass in order to gather information that helps the audience better understand the issue being covered.
How should a reporter respond when someone uses emotional pressure and threats to try to stop them doing their job? In this scenario we look at a situation where a reporter is begged not to cover a story, and then threatened with violence if they publish. What would you do?