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Panpa Bulletin : November 2010
PA Bulletin | NOVEMBER 2010 | 17 eived expectation of the specially Singapore -- may mmission a video-sting. ition of using these sorts of Sydney's Daily Telegraph. as a tradition of it. much more readily accepted in ure here. k we (the Daily Telegraph) are a -ground tabloid. dercover secret video journalists . e are training reporters to shoot ut we are still babes in the woods s should not be used "on Joe Citizen sts it might be acceptable as a form with public or high-profile positions ng with the media. e's first meeting with a journalist to in their mouth. uldlovetobeable to d mind is privacy and whether or not it is in New Zealand's top investigative reporter, Dom hin, believes the use of undercover recording d when police fail. ome of my main stories, the police appeared not to be ng when they definitely should have been. metimes it was essential to embarrass the police into doing thing," he said. Kitchin's most famous story is the case of Louise Nicholas, a Zealand woman who alleged that several policemen gang ed her but then believed the court never heard the full story. Police were involved in a cover up, and so Mr Kitchin felt it was important to use hid- den electronic devices to try to reveal the truth. He recalls: "We wired Louise Nicholas before a conversa- tion with Detective Inspector John Dewar, who was in charge of the police investigation. "He admitted he believed there could never have been consen- sual sex with the use of a (police) baton against a woman. That ation was used as evidence, and he went to jail." tchin's investigations, he says he has always identified a reporter but has used wires and hidden video cam- He says there is a place for such ta public interest . . . "particularly in cases when there is a tablished evidence that there was a crime involved". "I would never argue for it if it was just a way to catch out some celebrity," he says. Walkley winner and author Adam Shand, who investigated the gangland murders in Melbourne, sees undercover reporting as a journalistic short-cut. He has had bad experi- ences with using a camera h den in a bag. "The times that I did use an undercover camera I got caught, I would get asked 'why do you inting that bag at me'?" a elieves most of the News of the World stories could hieved "without the lying". s of the World reporter, who has to keep his identity her Mahmood), could never, say, pick up a Walkley for ays Mr Shand. e test case in which journalists of TheSunday Times claimed nt US soccer interests, there is now disquiet about what ht mean for relationships between English and American ministrators. ugh firmly against the use of undercover techniques, Mr admitted they make for great stories. "But I would not put me on it", he said. "It is not something I want to be associ- with. It tarnishes your brand". ood old journalistic techniques of building trust with your es, sifting through paperwork and long hours of continued t" can still result in great stories. rett McCarthy, editor of the West Australian, agrees. I don't see what the News of the World has done as investigative urnalism" he says. "The stuff they do involves lying, duping or tricking people into ertain situations. "What I see as investigative journalism is sifting through con- tracts, digging deep into issues and using your contacts to the best of your ability rather than to just pick a target and lie to get them somewhere. "It's wrong. I wouldn't authorise it." Although differences in privacy and telecommunications laws differ in various jurisdictions, the Daily Telegraph's Garry Linnell says the benefits of undercover journalism are still tempting. "The ability to get that 'gee-wiz' reaction from readers . . . exclusive stories which unfold over a period of days . . . stories which have huge ramifications . . . that's what we are looking for, isn't it?"