1. I think a nation of bloggers/citizen journalists/hyperlocals/community news or whatever anyone wants to call them is a good thing because it gives traditional media extra eyes, eyes they didn’t have a few years ago to cover all the issues happening around us. There is a reason why CNN bought Ireport, and allvoices is becoming popular in the USA, and just a few days ago New Voices invested thousands of dollars in 9 community news websites in the USA as well. Unfortunately Australia is always a behind with the rest of the world but we will catch up. It would be nice to see traditional media and social media working together to provide communities with information and news we really want to hear about. I’ll be waiting for that day. 🙂

  2. Easy answer — Steve Jobs can make money directly off editorial publishing — bloggers not so much. Steve is an iconic and inspirational leader and people follow his comments — but let’s remember, he is not Ghandhi, he is a capitalist. Which is fine — just remember where he is coming from.

  3. Let’s be honest, editorial control is important – especially in terms of fact checking, making sure language is used in a way that communicates information well and without confusion, and in terms of setting agendas about what is worth covering. It is easy to be cynical about this because traditional media outlets haven’t always done it well. News, and what we might consider ‘newsworthy’, is quite time sensitive and it seems lately it has become more important to be first than to be accurate. [I mean it’s one thing to have two stories ready to go depending on who wins MasterChef Australia, it is another entirely to have made up quotations from the winner commending the loser… especially when the wrong story goes ‘live’ on a certain news website. Publishing the wrong article by mistake is embarrassing, but making up quotations that clearly never happened is frankly disturbing. Where was the editorial guidance there?]

    I would love to see a nation of bloggers. Because blogging is a technology, not a genre. It isn’t just about news and politics, it’s about whatever the author wants it to be about. I would love to see my grandmother share her recipes on a blog. I would love to see my nephew share his Star Wars fandom on a blog. I love reading Cynthia Harrison’s blog about her writing career. I love reading Annabel Astbury’s EduFutures blog. I love reading Cori’s blog about life as a newly single mother. People have experiences and passions that might not necessarily make good 30 second sound grabs but are still deeply fascinating to behold. The constraints of blogging are different to traditional media, and the ability to opt in and opt out as you wish means you can be highly specialised, you don’t have to ‘broadcast’ to middle America or whatever.

    1. And I always … nearly always… appreciate the editorial oversight you and other commenters bring to my articles. As finicky as they are, as broad as they are, I’m a better writer and blogger because of it.
      Process journalism (large group, public edits) vs product journalism (small group, private edits)?

  4. Disclaimer – I work in PR, one of the industries behind journalism, which has been affected the most by this change. Thus I have a vested interest in this post.

    I think your post title poses an interesting question. There are certainly no shortages of PR people that wish we could return to a world of managed media. Though I believe the question is redundant.

    There have been enormous advantages by lowering the publishing and in turn influence thresholds, however it would be difficult to argue nothing has been lost. Has the good outweighed the bad? In my opinion without doubt. To what degree, I would argue enormously, but others may disagree.

    The reality is that now people have been given the platforms to easily share their voice, they will not give it up. Huge numbers have adopted and use social platforms to create content and infinitely more consume content through these platforms. People like social media.

    Social media media is here to stay. No matter how many media moguls, journalists or PR people wish it wouldn’t.

    A nation of bloggers and Facebook status updates and Tweeters is the reality. Thus let’s not focus on whether this is good or bad and move on. The clever people are already working out how to make the most of it.

    Though Laurel I have a feeling that is your position too. You just know how to write controversial headlines! 😉

  5. I think blogs are a great addition to the community. They do not replace full time reporters however. On some specialized topics and to an amazing degree on a some blogs, they go even further that traditional reporters. However, by and large the in depth coverage that media CAN do (but honestly rarely does) is not replaced for the most part by blogers.

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