Fit to Print? Professor Wagner Provides Expert Testimony at Blog's Defamation Trial

Wednesday, May 03, 2017
SANTA MARIA SUN -- Taken together, the evidence showed that the reporting of the story, and the choice to publish it veered widely from established norms and best ethical practices in journalism, according to Venise Wagner, a working reporter and San Francisco State University Journalism professor who was called as an expert witness in the trial. “There didn’t seem to be enough care taken to find out what the truth was,” Wagner said. “It was unusual to me that the news organization was so entrenched in their beliefs despite the facts,” Wagner said in an interview with the Sun. Wagner said she felt compelled to testify in the case, not only because she believed that the article and the way it was reported represents a breach of public trust, but because such cases damage the public perception of journalism as a whole.