Argument: Spider-Man and Superman Were Very Unethical Journalists

Two of the most popular superheroes work in journalism. Peter Parker (Spider-Man), is a photojournalist with the Daily Bugle of New York City. Clark Kent (Superman) is a reporter for the Daily Planet of Metropolis. It's a good industry for superheroes to work in. Journalists often get access to information first. When there's a crisis, Peter Parker and Clark Kent often learn of it quickly because they work in that field.

But are they good journalists? That profession has certain ethical standards. When there's a conflict between their two occupations, Spider-Man and Superman often compromise their public jobs to advance their superhero work. That's the argument that Daniel J. Snyder, a writer for The Atlantic, makes:

Up until a few years ago, and for the majority of his 50-year existence, Peter Parker committed repeated acts of fraud against his employer, The Daily Bugle and its editor-in-chief, J. Jonah Jameson (who would later, as the mayor of New York, employ Parker as a photographer). He sold staged photos of himself as Spider-Man and used his position in the media to influence the public's perception of his actions. Meanwhile, Superman, as award-winning Daily Planet reporter Clark Kent, has reported on himself and given privileged information to his girlfriend, Lois Lane, whose relationship with Superman remains undisclosed.

Hypocritically, Snyder does not disclose how his own secret identity compromises his objectivity on this story.

-via But Not Simpler | Images: Marvel, DC


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