"White Lies: Bending the Truth to Expose Injustice" - Henry McNulty - Journalism Ethics Cases Online

"White Lies: Bending the Truth to Expose Injustice" - Henry McNulty - Journalism Ethics Cases Online

Is it ever acceptable for journalists to use deception to gather facts? What if the resulting story uncovers a major social wrong?

by: Henry McNulty | publication date: August 1, 1989 | Publication: Indiana University |

"That "does-the-end-justify-the-means" dilemma confronted me this spring when my newspaper, The Hartford Courant, reported on racial bias among some area real estate firms. Reporters, appearing to be almost identical in every financial and personal detail except race, posed as potential home buyers to gather the evidence. In some cases, real estate agents gave the "testers" who were black tougher financial scrutiny. Other times, blacks were "steered" to towns that already have significant minority populations."

Henry McNulty investigates the article written about racial bias in real estate areas surrounding Hartford, Connecticut, in his newspaper The Hartford Courant.

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