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Free Content The public's right to know in liberal-democratic thought vs. The people's obligation to know in Hebrew law

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This study compares the codes of media ethics adopted by the PCCPress Complaints Commission, the IFJInternational Federation of Journalists and the SPJSociety of Professional Journalists based on the claim that it is the public's right to know, and examines the origins of this concept. A new approach is presented here which falls between the liberal-democratic approach on the one hand and on the other, the extreme ultra-Orthodox approach that claims that it is the public's duty not to know. This new approach which indicates that it is the public's duty to know has evolved from the analysis of Jewish texts from Biblical times and from the study of events in Jewish community life throughout the world. This novel approach is likely to effect a change in the contents of broadcasts and in the boundaries of media ethics.

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Keywords: Communication ethics; Hebrew Law; Mass communication; Media Ethics; Right to know

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Bar-Ilan University; Lifshitz College of Education, Jerusalem.

Publication date: November 1, 2009

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  • Empedocles aims to provide a publication and discussion platform for those working at the interface of philosophy and the study of communication, in all its aspects. This Journal is published in cooperation with the Section for the Philosophy of Communication of ECREA, the European Communication Reserach and Education Association.
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