“I think the media have to be very clear, very transparent, and not fall into — no offense intended — the sickness of coprophilia, that is, always wanting to cover scandals, covering nasty things,” Francis said in an interview published Wednesday in Tertio, according to Reuters and to other reporters who read the Belgian publication.
Crux, a news outlet covering the Catholic church, said the interview was conducted in Spanish, in which the term coprophilia is sometimes used more loosely to describe a morbid interest in dirty things, not just a prurient interest in feces. Later in the same interview, Francis used the related term “coprophagy.”
Crux said that Francis criticized media outlets that look only for negative stories and those that smear people’s reputations, but reserved the harshest criticism for those who report untruths. Spreading incorrect information, Francis reportedly said, is “probably the biggest damage a news organization can cause.”