In this week’s WebCam, Cam Wilson reflects on the moral complexities of criminal reporting and the indelible mark of online information.


I was in my natural state this morning — scrolling through Twitter — when I came across a news article from an Australian media publisher that made me physically shiver.

I’ll share why, but first a little story about me: my first reporter job was working for the ABC in Geraldton, a coastal town about 400 kilometres north of Perth. My job was mostly reporting and sometimes reading the local radio bulletins each day. It was a great job!

We only had a small office with a handful of reporters, so court duty was one of the more reliable ways to find yarns. You turn up to the courthouse and there’s a quick procession of hearings — essentially stories handed to you on a platter, ready to be reported.

It was around that time I really started to think about the newsworthiness of crime reporting (which largely overlaps with court reporting). There’…

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