If the news industry is going to explore transparency as an alternative to the “journalistic objectivity” claim to credibility (and yes, as a matter of fact, we are), then this big idea is going to have to confront a series of small questions. Thank goodness we can begin answering them.
What's wrong with objectivity?
First, we all need to agree on something important. Scientific objectivity is an experimental condition that limits observation so that the collected data will be identical for all observers (and, if managed properly, repeatable in multiple trials). Journalistic objectivity is an assumed perspective that includes a set of variable practices, but is essentially a subjective claim to credibility.
The problem with that credibility claim is that Americans don't believe it. A Gallop poll in September found that 57 percent of Americans say they have little or no trust in the mass media to report the news fully, accurately and fairly. That's a record low for this Gallop question, and it reflects a decades-long declining trend that others have noticed as well.