Social learning theory proposes that most people become motivated to commit misdemeanors, maladaptive behaviors and/or crimes among those whom they associate. Many of us raised in poor sections of industrial towns and living among fellow immigrants, find survival behaviors trump social graces. Such learned behaviors extend into adulthood. When someone commits a negative behavior contrary to the law, it is an obligation to report it to the proper authority. The issue of “reporting such behaviors” becomes more complicated when writing articles for public readers.
Living the RV lifestyle, witnessing many incidents of malfeasance, malpractice and misappropriation, becomes an occasional annoyance. However, writing about it moves the process from objectivism to subjectivism. Writing about controversial issues can be concealed in a generic manner by stating the issue without specifying “who, when and where.” On the other hand, when the issue is so egregious, blatant and recurring, it should be confronted directly with the person, company or organization. If that does not resolve the situation, then cooperating with law enforcement, simultaneous reporting is warranted. Reporting the facts as they become public is legal and necessary. Even if the guilty party seeks retribution. But what if the guilty party is an advertiser supporting a publication?
For every advertiser, there are many competitors. The RV industry is multi-faceted, diverse and constantly evolving. Having one advertiser (or group of advertisers) upset because its defects were discovered and reported, does not make a significant dent in any industry. On the contrary, the industry is better off knowing and understanding the problem within its boundaries. RVtravel.com is the most widely read, independent reporting in the world of RVing. For every negative statement directed toward the publication, it is offset by an assembly of admirers and supporters.
There will always be pressures from politics, groups, companies, etc. Good journalism, be it actual reporting of facts, critical analysis, personal opinions or comedy, should be geared to the reader, not powerful influencers. Tell the readers what is occurring, how you interpret what you observe and provide your opinions. I write about what interests me, from a psychoanalytic perspective, assuming there are some who think similarly. You publish that which interests RVers in general. We do what we do, not because we are forced to by people in power, but to reach the public with similar interest.