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Stats: 17,455 members, 69,251 Topics, 15,446 Comments. Date: Jun 17 2019, 7:36 am

Rufai Oladimeji
Lagos State University
100Level, Nigeria.

Is newspaper reporting considered as
backbiting, slander or spying? Hadith
tells us that to say negatively on
someone is backbiting, if it is true, and
a slander if it is not true. What am I to
do if I'm a newspaper reporter? At
times the news I get may not be


All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord
of the Worlds. I testify that there is
none worthy of worship except Allah,
and that Muhammad is His slave
and Messenger.
The Prophetic narration is clear in
defining backbiting and slander, and the
news that is so, is considered
backbiting and slandering. If this is in a
newspaper, it may even increase the sin
because the news spreads.

A Muslim should seek to be truthful
wherever he is; therefore, it is not
permissible for a journalist to spread
the news which he is not sure is true.
The Prophet said: “It is enough a
lie for a person to convey everything
that he hears.” [Muslim]
However, it should be noted that when
a person spreads some news he is sure
about, and this news is considered as
backbiting but spreading it leads to a
benefit, like showing the dissoluteness
of a person who takes people’s money
without right so that people will beware
of him, then it appears that it is
permissible to spread this news.
Spying is looking for people’s faults,
and this is forbidden like backbiting or
even graver than it, as stated by some
scholars .
Allah Knows best.


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