Occupation Lawyer, Professor
Affiliations Georgia State University
Greg Lisby (Ph.D., University of Tennessee, 1988) is Professor of Communication, with specialization in journalism and mass communication research. Lisby has also earned a J.D. degree from Georgia State University, and is a licensed attorney in the state of Georgia. 
Interview about 'Ethics in Journalism'
Super Bunnyhop: Umm, can you quickly tell us who you are, and what are your professional background is?
Greg Lisby: Sure! My name is Greg Lisby, I'm at the moment the associate chair of the department of communication at Georgia State Universtiy. My background is law, I have a PhD from University of Tennessee and a law degree from Georgia State and I'm a member of the Bar at the State Bar of Georgia so I practice in Georgia. The area that I research is copyright law and also I deal with ethics, especially ethics with regard to journalist and with regard to lawyers.
SB: Uh, and that's- that's the relevant part.
Lisby: [laughs] OK!
SB: Would maintaining a friendship with a journalistic source outside of- of the field be a breach of journalism ethics?
Lisby: And if it's not a breach of journalism ethics, you are walking a very fine line. I mean think about it just for a second. Whether it's a family member or a friend, and lets just put the journalist aside, this is me and you as friends. What can I expect of you as a friend, what can you expect of me as a friend? What we would hope, that each of us would try to put the other person's interests before people we don't know, I mean that's what friends do. [phone starts ringing] Let the machine get that if that's alright with you. Umm, if- if we let the- if we let- put the other people's interest first, ok, fine we're friends right, but think about it with regard to what happens if you're a journalist and I'm a friend. Well, fine, as long as you're not writing anything about what I'm dealing with here. Because the minute you start writing that, whether I'm a inventor and you're writing about my invention, whether I'm a- uh- this person, it doesn't make a bit of difference. The minute you start writing about that, the minute happens when you run the risk of violating ethics, because you get so close to the source, are you biased.
SB: Now, what about, um, how close of a friendship are we talking here? What about the- the need to maintain connections in an industry you are covering in order to simply know who's who and what's going on?