Dixie State University's Student News Source

May 24th, 2017,

Editor's Note: Truth priority for Dixie Sun News

“Truth fears no questions” are the words sprawled above the hallway near the front entrance of the Jennings Communication Building. 

That motto, attributed everywhere online as an anonymous quote, was often one of the first things I saw as I arrived at Dixie State University nearly every morning during the past two semesters I served as editor-in-chief of the Dixie Sun News. While I’m proud to be a journalist and work with so many up-and-coming reporters on the Dixie Sun News staff, I’ve witnessed the questioning of journalists in the U.S. become closer to a full-fledged revolt against the truth. 

Honest journalists, like the kind the Dixie Sun News spins out, aren’t the “opposition party” or bringers of “fake news.” The truth is our No. 1 priority. 

We leave our personal biases at home, talk with all sides of every story, and do our best to verify all facts thrown at us to ensure our stories are as truthful as possible. Even when the truth is ugly or when it challenges my personal world views, the complete truth is something I have learned to always be seeking as a journalist. 

In this information-saturated world of the internet, I can understand how it can be confusing determining what sources of information and news are trustworthy. 

Journalists’ monopoly on the truth ended with the advent of the social media, smartphones and comment sections. Anyone can post, tweet or snap their version of the truth to the world with zero fact checkers — even if that person sits in the Oval Office and commands the world’s most powerful military. 

With the nationwide attack on journalists’ credibility, truth has become subjective. Those in government positions or even private citizens are often not as concerned with providing both sides of every issue before they share their version of the truth. They don’t check with an editor to make sure what they are saying is accurate. They don’t care if their “truth” is interlaced with opinions that could be confused with facts. 

While journalists aren’t always perfect, the truth described by legitimate journalists is often closer to reality than the alternatives. 

Next year’s editor-in-chief, Markee Heckenliable, is also committed to this vision of delivering the truth and keeping the Dixie Sun News “the voice of Dixie.” Work with her and other Dixie Sun News staff members next semester so they can better serve the DSU community and hold those in power accountable.

Journalism is here to stay and will continue to be the unafraid deliverer of the truth. 

Spencer Ricks - Spencer Ricks is the Editor-in-Chief of the Dixie Sun News, News Director on Radio Dixie 91.3, and adventurer on the weekends. He's interned at KSL.com, Seattle Met Magazine and Publicola News — covering everything from flash floods to local politics to Pokémon Go. Follow him on Twitter @SpencerRicks or on Facebook at facebook.com/spencerricksnews.

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