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Investigative Journalism – The Serum Against the Snake’s Bite

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Part of the Library of Public Policy and Public Administration book series (LPPP,volume 15)

Abstract

We know of the key cases of media corruption and generally of corruption referred to in this book, because they were first exposed and reported through the media, and specifically investigative journalists working in conjunction with whistleblowers and citizen journalists. Using the metaphorical analogy of Socrates as the first investigative journalist, the chapter will demonstrate the crucial importance that investigative journalism still plays in exposing and reporting worldwide corruption as illustrated by the Panama Papers case and the Cambridge Analytica controversy, analyzed in this chapter. The chapter will also examine how the symbiotic relationship between the fourth and fifth Estates working together in conjunction, help expose and report on global corruption. This is a welcome and major development and paradigm shift on how this symbiotic relationship between the corporate investigative journalists of the fourth Estate and the citizen journalists of the fifth Estate, as well as whistleblowers, such as Julian Assange and Edward Snowden, and before them many others such as Daniel Ellsberg, Frank Serpico and Katharine Dunn, and the collective voices of social media in their role of bearing witness, valiantly expose major and worldwide instances of corruption, including media corruption.

O my friend, why do you who are a citizen of the great and mighty and wise city of Athens, care so much about laying up the greatest amount of money and honour and reputation, and so little about wisdom and truth … Are you not ashamed of this? (Plato, Apology, 1952).

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  • DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-61612-0_6
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Notes

  1. 1.

    For a critical review of the film see Alex von Tunzelmann (2015) Good Night, and Good Luck: attack on McCarthyism simplifies but satisfies, The Guardian, March 30, 2015. https://www.theguardian.com/film/filmblog/2015/mar/30/ggod-night-and-good-luck-george-clooney-edward-murrow-reel-history. Accessed: April 8, 2020.

  2. 2.

    See the entry on Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frank_Serpico. Accessed: March 17, 2020.

  3. 3.

    The “Troubles” concerns a violent sectarian conflict from 1968 to 1998 in Northern Ireland between the Protestant unionists or loyalists who wished the province to remain part of the United Kingdom and the Roman Catholic nationalists or republicans who wanted Northern Ireland to become part of the Republic of Ireland.

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Spence, E.H. (2021). Investigative Journalism – The Serum Against the Snake’s Bite. In: Media Corruption in the Age of Information. Library of Public Policy and Public Administration, vol 15. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-61612-0_6

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