One of journalism's greatest assets is trust: The public's trust that the facts and information we provide are true and can be trusted.
So journalists need to be careful not to risk their own reputation and this trust. Journalism's image, particularly in the UK, has suffered in recent years, with the population seeing the profession as a collection of celebrity-gossip-craving paparazzi. And it does not look as if we (or at least some journalists) have learned our lesson.
If a wife worrying about her husbands' life hast to ask journalists to take a step back, as they are hindering doctors in doing everything they can to save her husband' life, that is when we should maybe reconsider whether we are going too far.
I am talking of course of Michael Schumacher's accident while skiing, marked by hundreds of articles and reports about it. And the journalists writing about it haven't always been acting as ethically as they should have been. The 45-year-old Formula One racing driver has been in a coma since his accident on the December 29th, and since that date there have been too many reporters neglecting morals to try and sneak into his room for an exclusive picture or interview - at least in my opinion. One even dressed up as a priest to try and gain access to Schuhmacher's room. This general behavior has been called appalling by the racer's management, family, hospital staff, and even some other members of the press.
Of course it is the press' responsibility to keep the public updated, but in cases such as as this one maybe it is even more important to respect the family - and let the doctors do their jobs.
Clara Easthill is a year 2 student on the BA in Journalism and the News Industry