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Future Hindsight is a weekly podcastthat takes big ideas in civic life and democracy and turns them into action items for everyday citizens.

Jun 19, 2020

Ethical Communication

Ethical communication involves respect and civil discourse. Taking time to listen to other sides and treating lawmakers with civility are key to a healthy democratic process. Respecting procedures that bolster the institutions of democracy and working together can help us achieve a better America.

The truth is click bait

The truth is not boring. We can be clever about presenting truth and facts. Presenting the truth in a click bait format—with catchy headlines, good photos, and a listicle—is possible. Ethical communication doesn’t have to be dry, like eating our vegetables.

Improving the media

The media can and should cover politics in a way that encourages citizens to be engaged participants in a democracy, instead of spectators. Recognizing robust and ethical leadership in our lawmakers will encourage a high bar of communication among all politicians. Supporting substantive reporting through subscriptions is imperative.

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Peter Loge is the founding director of the Project on Ethics in Political Communication and an Associate Professor in the School of Media and Public Affairs at The George Washington University, as well as a strategic communication consultant.

He has served in senior positions for Senator Edward Kennedy, for three members of the US House of Representatives, and in the Obama administration. Loge has led and advised a range of campaigns and organizations, put the first Member of Congress on the internet, lobbied for “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” served as a Senior Policy Advisor for health care in the US House during the debate over the Affordable Care Act, and was a Chief of Staff in the House of Representatives during the Clinton impeachment proceedings.

You can follow him on Twitter @ploge.