In class, I screened the HBO Documentary, The Trials of Ted Haggard, about the “fallen” evangelist. The documentary raises some major issues about media ethics.
1. To what extent should someone making a documentary explain the context of an event? For example, we really don’t learn much about the pastor’s settlement with his church.
2. When a documentary focusses on one person, should we not also learn about other key characters? There is no in-depth interview with the man who had relations with the pastor. He just states his position and that’s that.
3. Does the documentary filmmaker need to tell us “what side” she is on: is she making the pastor look bad, or just letting him talk without a point of view?
Update on April 21, 2009
More on Pastor Ted’s troubles.
Originally posted April 14, 2009 at PolicyByBlog