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NCJ Number: 166941 Find in a Library
Title: News Media and Account Ability in Criminal Justice (From Accountability for Criminal Justice: Selected Essays, P 135-161, 1995, Philip C Stenning, ed. -- See NCJ 166936)
Author(s): R V Ericson
Date Published: 1995
Page Count: 27
Sponsoring Agency: University of Toronto Press
Buffalo, NY 14203
Sale Source: University of Toronto Press
33 East Tupper Street
Buffalo, NY 14203
United States of America
Type: Issue Overview
Language: English
Country: Canada
Annotation: The analysis of how the news media participate in processes of accountability is central to an understanding of accountability in criminal justice.
Abstract: The author initially discusses the concept of accountability and then considers the various institutions that comprise criminal justice. The author argues that the news media do not stand apart from the various arenas in which people seek criminal justice, but are integral to their daily practices; hence, the news media are best conceptualized as part of criminal justice rather than as external reporters on criminal justice. With this concept, the author analyzes criminal justice as a communication process that involves strategic practices in secrecy and revelation that both exclude and include the news media. Whether a crime or criminal justice practice is publicized is shown to be related to the strategic interests of the parties involved and their "account ability" or capacity to explain their activities in a credible manner. Account ability is related to the social, cultural, and spatial aspects of how news is produced and distributed and to the peculiar requirements of the format of news communications. Social, cultural, spatial, and communications format dimensions create different environments of account ability across the various organizational contexts of criminal justice, for example, among policing, prosecution, adjudication, punishment, and lawmaking.
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Accountability; Media coverage; Police-media relations; Public information
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=166941

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