The Mississippi newspaper will not be covering Tiger Woods while he seeks treatment for his sex addiction in their city. To do so would not “show good taste.” Their explanation:
Since Saturday, the American has not published any reports on Woods possibly being here.
And, unless there is some confirmation from the clinic or Woods himself, we don’t intend to assign a reporter/photographer team to this story.
If something happens that warrants coverage, we’ll have it.
There is a fine line between covering Woods when he wrecks his car and extending coverage when and if he gets treatment.
Where does news end and privacy begin, even if the person involved is one of the most recognizable faces in the world? That’s a question that journalists debate constantly.
One of the tenets of the Society of Professional Journalists’ Code of Ethics states: “Show good taste. Avoid pandering to lurid curiosity.”
We believe Woods deserves some privacy if he is getting treatment in Hattiesburg – or in Arizona or South Africa, as other online sites have reported in the last couple of weeks.
And we believe other patients at the clinic also deserve to be left alone.
Too often editors argue that events must be covered because, well, everyone else is covering it. Sometimes the right coverage is no coverage at all.