Problems and contradictions of the journalists' conscience clause regulation

Daniel Capodiferro Cubero

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleResearchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

© UNED. The objective of this paper is to critically analyse the actual regulation of the journalists' conscience clause, reflecting its practical shortcomings and contradictions, considering the doctrine has not reflected enough these particulars yet. When developing the journalists' conscience clause, the Spanish legislator and the Constitutional Court have created a complex legal framework, where the professional integrity, the right to information and the safeguarding of pluralism are appointed as the fundamental basis of the right. However, its content is particularly poor and ineffective as an individual or collective mechanism of protection. The freedom of expression, visible form of the ideological independence of the information contents' authors and an essential element of journalistic work, seem to be put to the background, but their guarantee is the best way to ensure the transmission of objective information that also meets the need for diversity required to satisfy the democratic principle. After analysing if the conscience clause is an effective protection mechanism of the journalist's individual position or the social interests related to media informative activities, the conclusion is this institution should be redefined. It is necessary to give it a more modest role in the Legal System or to change its contents in order to really ensure the journalists' freedom of communication in a media and the citizens' right to correctly receive informative messages.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)219-252
JournalRevista de Derecho Politico
Issue number94
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2015

Keywords

  • Conscience clause
  • Freedom of expression and information
  • Journalism ethics
  • Pluralism
  • Professional independence

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