Scanning through the questions I find there has been this allusion to "authenticity."
Bird calls showing up in parts of the world where the species would never migrate. Recording sound effects to be as authentic to the situation as possible. Authentic ambiences for site specific story locales.
The majority of my work is in documentary TV, so I understand the desire to be authentic when accuracy is what you're selling. If the script is written in a factual fashion I lean heavily on sync sound and do as much research as I can to use appropriate sound effects. But when presented with an hour long episode of "World's Rarest Underground Sloths*" and an accompanying OMF that includes zero sync audio and a post-it that says "audio- please fill out all scenes, will swing by in 4 days for mix review" I can't help but feel a little responsible for misinforming the listeners.
Alternatively, if I get the opportunity to tell a human story full of recreations, historical recounts, etc. I try to use the storyteller as prism and throw authenticity out the window, feeling no remorse for embellishing the audio in my attempt to convey the emotion of the account.
Obviously, these are two extremes on a very broad scale. But I'd like to get your opinion on where along the scale we cross that wide fuzzy line between artistic license and liar. Fact or fiction, at what point do we become accountable for supporting the propagation of misinformation?
*Not a real show as far as I know.