Michael Tippett shares some further links in a quest to define / understand citizen journalism.
The best article is this one. Did London bombings turn citizen journalists into citizen paparazzi? – Mark Glaser (OJR) relfects upon citizen reports after the London bombings. He also shares stats on the web traffic generated by the tragedy. More importantly, he writes about the reactions of some who feel they (as witnesses) were either bothered by the “Citizen paparazzi” or by the bothersome journalists calling them and trying to turn them into a ‘Blast Survivor Girlie’, for example.
Let us all remember: Bloggers and cellphone owners are not journalists. It takes more than access to an outlet (technology / channel) to be termed a journalist. I truly wish the ‘citizen journalist’ phrase had never been coined.
“The mainstream struggles to co-opt citizens media” – Terry Heaton on MSM efforts to capitalize on citizen journalism.
A new kind of journalist – Jeff Jarvis on the “job description” for after a model has been defined to accomplish that co-opt effort.
Armed With Right Cellphone, Anyone Can Be a Journalist – by Emily Turrettini from Geneva, Switzerland is another unfortunate usage of the term ‘journalist’ when the author really means content ‘contributor’. It is also a perfect example of how MSM is trying to co-opt the trend/fad. The most telling quote, “WABC hopes that broadcasting images contributed by the public will give it an advantage over its competitors. It ‘is a way to have something nobody else will have,’ Mr. Thompson said.” Translation: Capitalizing on it for ratings. Monetizing a new source. Citizen paparazzi. The journalism is happening in the station’s newsroom. They sift through the content and try to give it context within a story. As for the contributors? No journalism there.
For a good take on one more co-opt effort, read Jeremy Pepper’s “MySpace is now FoxSpace” post.
Also, see this latest article at CJR Daily: Citizen Journalism or a Message Board?. It offers a definition:
for distinguishing between “participatory journalists,” who send information and photos in to edited news sites, and “citizen journalists,” who write their own news articles and post them on unedited sites.