New York University professor Jay Rosen recently wrote:
It’s incumbent upon journalists to level with people. If that means backing up to say, “Actually, it’s hard to tell what happened here,” or, “I’ll share with you what I know, but I don’t know who’s right.” This may be unsatisfying to some, but it may also be the best an honest reporter can do.
Rosen was speaking in terms of political reporting, but his analogy is a good one for all types of stories you might cover. Frustrated with the conflicting estimates of how much oil is leaking into the Gulf of Mexico? The PBS News Hour opened my eyes to a new way to tell the story: