Perceptions of Brazilian journalists about privacy

Keywords: Privacy, Journalists, Reporting, Technology, Media Ethics


The technological and cultural transformations of the last decades have changed important values ​​for social life, among them privacy. Journalists daily need to consider the boundaries between the public and private spheres, and decide whether to violate their borders or meet the expectations of sources. This article aims to know how Brazilian journalists relate to privacy in their profession and how they guide their behavior in ethical dilemmas. To do this, we applied an online survey to 120 journalists questioning their conduct in investigations and disclosures. The research participants are male and female writing professionals, with diverse trajectories and experience, from all regions of the country. The results suggest that Brazilian journalists value the privacy of their sources more than their own, and that there is an oscillating behavior in spreading delicate topics such as rape, kidnapping and suicide. It was also noted that there are many uncertainties in how to act in the face of new technologies, such as the use of drones.


Download data is not yet available.


ALLEN, A. L. (2003). Why journalists can´t protect privacy. IN: LAMAY, Craig L. (ed.) Journalism and the debate over privacy. London: LEA.
ANTONIALLI, D.; ABREU, J. de S. (2015). Vigilância das comunicações pelo estado brasileiro. Eletronic Frontier Foundation-InterLab. Disponível em Acessado em 15 de agosto de 2018.
BLATTERER, H.; JOHNSON, P.; MARKUS, M.R. (2010). Modern Privacy: shifting boundaries, new forms. Nova York: Palgrave Macmillan.
BOYD, D. “Privacy, Publicity, and Visibility”. Palestra na Microsoft Tech Fest em 4 de março de 2010. Disponível em Acessado em 5 de julho de 2016.
CARLO, S. & KAMPHUIS, A. (2014). Information Security for Journalists. London: The Centre for Investigative Journalism.
CARLSON, M. (2011). On the condition of anonymity: Unnamed sources and the battle for journalism. Urbana-Chicago-Springfield: University of Illinois Press.
CHRISTOFOLETTI, R.; GAIA, G.O. (2018). Direito e proteção à privacidade em códigos deontológicos de jornalismo. MEDIA E JORNALISMO, v. 32, pp. 43-54.
DAGAN, M. Online Privacy for Journalists, 2017. Disponível em Acessado em 18 de julho de 2018.
FUNDACIÓN PARA LA LIBERTAD DE PRENSA. (2015). Manual Antiespías: herramientas para la protección digital de periodistas. Disponvível em Acessado em 10 de agosto de 2018.
GAUTHIER, C.C. (2002). Privacy Invasion by the news media: three ethical models. Journal of Mass Media Ethics, 17(1), 20-34.
GOODMAN, L. Snowball Sampling. (1961). In: Annals of Mathematical Statistics, 32:148-170.
HEIKKILÄ, H. (2016). Canaries in the Coalmine - Why journalists should be concerned by privacy . In: CARLSSON, U. (ed.). Freedom of Expression and Media in Transition: Studies and reflections in the digital age. Göteborg: Nordicom.
HODGES, L. (1994). The journalist and privacy. Journal of Mass Media Ethics, vol 9 n.4, pp-197-212.
KLOSEK, J. (2007). The war on privacy. Westport-London: Praeger.
LAMAY, C. L. (ed). (2003). Journalism and the debate over privacy. London: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
LASHMAR, P. No more sources? The impact of Snowden’s revelations on journalists and their confidential sources. (2016). Journalism Practice.
MARTINS, P. (2013). O público no privado. Coimbra: Almedina.
MCSTAY, A. (2017). Privacy and the media. Los Angeles/London: Sage.
MICK, J.; LIMA, S. (2013). Perfil do jornalista brasileiro. Florianópolis: Ed. Insular.
MILSS, J. (2015). Privacy in the new media age. University Press of Florida.
MOINI, R,; ISMAIL, B.; VIALLE, E. (2016). Censura e Vigilância de Jornalistas; um negócio sem escrúpulos. Rio de Janeiro: Repórteres Sem Fronteiras.
NISSENBAUM, H. (2010). Privacy in context: technology, policy and integrity of social life. Stanford: Stanford Law Book.
O’HARA, K. & SHADBOLT, N. (2008). The spy in the coffee machine: the end of privacy as we know it. Oxford: Oneworld.
PAUL, Nora. (1994). Some paradoxes of privacy. Journal of Mass Media Ethics, vol. 9 n.4, pp. 228-230.
PETLEY, J. (2013). Media and public shaming: drawing the boundaries of disclosure. London: I.B.Tauris.
PEREIRA, M. A ética nas profundezas do mar sem-fim: as políticas de privacidade e a estratégia da ponta do icerberg no Facebook. (2018) IN: PERES-NETO, Luiz; CORRAL, Joan Botella. Éticas em rede: políticas de privacidade e moralidades públicas. 2ª edição. São Paulo: Estação das Letras e Cores.
PERES-NETO, L. (2018). Éticas, comunicação e consumo: um mapa para pensar os desafios da privacidade em rede. IN: PERES-NETO, Luiz; CORRAL, Joan Botella. Éticas em rede: políticas de privacidade e moralidades públicas. 2ª edição. São Paulo: Estação das Letras e Cores.
PETRONIO, S. (2002). Boundaries of Privacy: dialetics of disclosure. Albany: SUNY Press.
POSSETTI, J. (2017). Protecting Journalism Sources in the digital age. Paris: Unesco.
ROSENBERG, J.M. (1969). The death of privacy. New York: Random House.
SARAT, A. (ed). (2015). A world without privacy: what law can and should do? New York: Cambridge University Press.
SCHAUER, F. (2003). The social construction of privacy. IN: LAMAY, Craig L. (ed.) Journalism and the debate over privacy. London: LEA.
SHAPIRO, I.; ROGERS, B. M. (2016). How the “Right to be Forgotten” Challenges Journalistic Principles. Digital Journalism.
SILVEIRA, S. A. (2017). Tudo sobre tod@s: redes digitais, privacidade e comércio de dados. São Paulo: Sesc Edições.
SOLOVE, D. J. (2008). Understanding Privacy. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
SUMNER, S. (2016). You: for sale. Protecting your personal data and privacy online. London: Elsevier.
SYKES, C. J. (1999). The end of privacy: The Attack on Personal Rights at Home, at Work, On-Line, and in Court. New York: Saint-Martin Press.
TOWNEND, J.; DABBURY, R. (2016). Protecting Sources and Whistleblowers in a Digital Age. London: Information Law and Policy Centre/Institute of Advanced Legal Studies.
TUBARO, P. & CASILLI, A.A. & SARABI, Y. (2014). Against the hypothesis of the end of privacy. London-New York: Springer.
VINCENT, D. (2016). Privacy: a short story. Cambridge: Polity Press.
WARREN, S.; BRANDEIS, L. (1890). The right to privacy. Harvard Law Review, 193.
WHITAKER, R. (1999). The End of Privacy: on Total Surveillance Is Becoming a Reality. Nova York: The New Press.
How to Cite
Christofoletti, R. (2019). Perceptions of Brazilian journalists about privacy. MATRIZes, 13(2), 179-202.
Em Pauta/Agenda