In his ethical journalism speech, Aiden White comments on the dire state of journalism. Though he acknowledges that our world is the most interconnected it's ever been, with more capacity to communicate and express ourselves than ever before in human history, White also notes that there are issues with the quality of the content we are consuming. We need reliable information to better participate in democratic process.
Because ethics are an important part of our lives (indeed, they are an integral part of maintaining society) White seeks to include all citizens in this conversation, rather than limiting it to the academic sphere. This is especially important considering the prevalence of the Internet. White makes the distinction between online free speech and journalism. Journalism has an obligation to be truthful, independent, impartial, be humane and be accountable. Unfortunately, the blurring of online and print journalism has made these principles harder to implement. However, White believes that we can build a new culture of information based on ethics if we pause for reflection and challenge the rush-to-publish culture we're currently embroiled in.