Advocacy Journalism

Often passionate and fiercely opinionated, advocacy journalism rejects the separation of news and opinion that characterizes contemporary journalistic norms. While still rooted in gathering, organizing, and presenting reliable information, the advocacy journalist is openly trying to make a case, rather than attempting objectivity.

Advocacy journalism was the norm in American newspapers before the 20th century, though its recent revival—particularly on cable news networks—has been controversial. Often linked to political parties or social movements, it served as part of broader mobilization efforts intended to bring about social change (or sometimes to hold it at bay). However, advocacy journalists would insist that they are as committed to accuracy as anyone—perhaps more so, given the need to build credibility with readers accustomed to a different style of reporting. This ...

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