First and foremost, thank you to all my readers for the comments, they are always greatly appreciated. As many of my readers have commented that social media provides outlets to many users to have their voice heard and take advantage of freedom of speech. However as I previously posted that many participants of citizen journalism are reciting information that may not be true. This is especially true with twitter. In the case of a celebrity fatality which has happened many times, participants blindly “retweet” false statements of their passing. Many of us are not taking advantage of learning through other options such as journals, articles etc that are provided through different means besides social media outlets.
Citizen journalism is different than professional journalism, the two competitors are now facing each other for the top stories. Its more about who gets it out the fastest than most accurate. Rebecca mentions a point that highlights their is a difference between the two however citizen journalism is slowly replacing professional journalism. We can see efforts by news stations such as CP24 that participants provide eyewitness facts or information regarding a story on their broadcast. The two are not the same and one should never expect information from participants producing citizen journalism to be 100% accurate until other sources are used to back the information.
However citizen journalism in the other end does provide any slander or influenced points of view. Something that I found interesting in this weeks readings is that professional journalism are influenced by political branches. They may state that their journals are the freedom of the press however journals and editorial content is usually selected for the benefit of the political branches that want something to be written in the paper to help their gains. This is obviously true in many examples especially in the USA where many citizens were not updated on the war in Iraq and the army individuals that had past away.
Citizen journalism is important however much of the information needs to be verified by readers that are in taking the information with other sources before reciting it and passing it on. It is also necessary to say that citizen journalism should not be replacing professional journalism entirely but should be a complimentary source to their information where it can be easily accessed by many especially through social media outlets.
Social media provides new outlets for citizen journalism because it actively engages participants within a small amount of characters to state what is on one’s mind. This also includes hash tags, which provides links to similar categories, which can then be further searched for more information. It engages participants to verify their information’s and news sources through mass public informing on the issue of interest. News broadcasters such as CP24 use twitter fans that have eye-witnessed real time events occur. They are usually broadcasted on tv or part of a news article as many have seen. It broadens the appeal to participate as your tweet will be part of an event of interest.
This also tends to hurt the appeal of professional journalism as ““The emergence of Twitter as a source for breaking news, and the speed at which information is disseminated on the network, is placing further strain on established journalistic practices” (Hermida, 2012). This strains the amount of information arriving on these feeds however they may be their but verification of information is not 100%. In the twitter world a statement could be possibly retweeted about 100 times making users unaware about the accuracy of information travelling. As Friedman stated Although information appeared quickly, if something went viral, it was widely distributed without much thought about its accuracy or the credibility of its sources” (2011).
Many of us choose to be selective about the news we read by selecting certain sources that aren’t “mainstream”. In these same efforts “many private individuals and groups with Internet and social-media connections presented their own news, their interpretations of news from traditional media or their points of view on blogs, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube”. The emergence of new opportunites encourages many of us to participate in citizen journalism especially with the ride range of outlets that can be used to find news sources as well as many outlets for one to put their voice out. These create more efforts to engage people to participate in the knowledge of the world without limiting ourselves to only one source for information.
Friedman, S. M. (2011). Three Mile Island, Chernobyl, and Fukushima: An analysis of traditional and new media coverage of nuclear accidents and radiation. Bulletin Of The Atomic Scientists, 67(5), 55-65.
Hermida, A. (2012). TWEETS AND TRUTH: Journalism as a discipline of collaborative verification. Journalism Practice. 6:5-6, p659-668.