The appearance of conflict etc. etc. etc.
There's an oft-ignored rule in journalism that the appearance of conflict of interest is just as important (and potentially damaging) as actual conflict of interest. As most readers probably know, the Globe endorsed the Tories in an editorial that ran on Saturday. I've never liked newspapers endorsing candidates or parties; I think it skewers any hope for objective coverage, but it's one of those things that just seems to happen. Well, Marcus Gee, the editorial page editor, appeared on one of the Globe's interactive discussions yesterday - apparently I'm not the only one with concerns about what this means for objectivity. What gets me, however, is that the only defence for endorsing someone at all is that ""You will find that all the major papers will endorse one party or another in this campaign, as they do in every one. There's a long tradition of this, going right back to our founder, George Brown, in the 1800s." He goes on to say that the reporters strive to provide objective, unbiased coverage, but the fact is there are a lot more factors that demonstrate a newspaper's bias than just the reportage itself. Story selection, story placement, photo selection. . . all of these things can demonstrate bias and all of these things are decided by editorial staff. I've never liked endorsements in newspapers. Marcus Gee does little to change my mind.