I was a first-year reporter at my local newspaper and had to visit the courthouse every day to review information about current cases. I became friends with most of the people who worked there, and they trusted me to look at confidential documents by myself. Each case file I examined had certain pages that were confidential. Eventually, the clerks stopped reminding me not to look at the confidential pages. One day, I needed to know some important information about a case, but that information was on the confidential pages of a document. I was faced with an ethical dilemma. Should I get the information I needed by looking at those pages? Several factors went into this decision. Am I breaking any laws? Is getting information the easy way worth the consequences of being caught? Is this information worth risking the loss of trust I had built up with the clerks? Am I staying true to myself? Am I the sort of person who would do this sort of thing? I flipped the paper to the confidential side and took a quick glance. Before I knew what I was
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