Sunday, May 29, 2011

Journalism as a Public conversation in the 21st century; what is the role of the citizen?

The role of the citizen in today's journalism industry has definitely become very much different than it was before. The introduction of the internet and tools like blogs and podcasts have allowed citizens to be more involved in journalism. While people may directly link the term citizen journalism to the internet, that is not totally accurate. Mainstream media like newspapers and magazines also involve readers in their journalism process but alternative media like blogs and podcasts have helped to magnify the involvement of citizens in journalism.

As said in the video above, "with the power of the internet anyone can get their story told to a worldwide audience." However, does that mean that just because most of us can now have a platform to tell our story, anyone with a blog or website should be considered a journalist? While the social media platform is definitely growing and people can easily get their stories out to the world, this priviledge should not be abused. It takes much more than a blog or a podcast for a citizen to be considered a journalist. However, it cannot be denied that the role of the citizen in today's journalism has definitely become more important and has helped many stories be delivered to the world in real time. It is thanks to citizen journalism that more views and stories can be heard and delivered to the world and offer people with a different perspective on issues.

The role of the citizen in a 21st century is no longer that of a consumer. With the power of the internet and simple tools like a mobile phone camera, citiizens of the 21st century have become involved in the journalism process. Although citizen journalism still has a long way to go in terms or determining the news value and credibility of their story, one major positive factor of citizen journalism that cannot be denied is the fact that it enables us to read news stories or opinions about issues knowing that it has not been framed according to how a newspaper or news corporation wants us to interpret it but is written simply based on someone's honest opinion.

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