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Citizen Journalists

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Citizen journalism was prominent among the topics under discussion at last night’s Cleveland Weblogger’s Meet-Up (several members of the group are conducting a series of interviews of Cleveland mayoral candidates).

How timely, then, that the latest Poynter E-Media Tidbits newsletter should include this brief post on the very same topic. The post references a report from Clyde Bently of the Missouri School of Journalism, in which Bentley asserts that, “Readers and potential contributors are not interested in a rehash of events and issues that are already covered by the city’s other news media. Rather, they are interested in issues that go largely ignored on the nightly news.”

Is this editorial gap a function of faulty assumptions on the part of mainstream media about what the audience wants, or is it a result of decisions made by those who control the media about what they want the audience to see?

Either way, citizen journalism is drawing the same sort of attention from MSM news outlets that P2P file sharing continues to draw from the music industry.

(Also available at brhubart.blogspot.com)

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About Bob Rhubart

  • Eric Olsen

    excellent Bob, and great to see you last night – thanks!

  • What are MSM news outlets

  • Nancy

    “Mainstream media” – at least so it was interpreted to me.

  • Exactly right. You know, for several months I had a sign on my office door that said, “AFZ: Acronym Free Zone.” It’s not that I have anything against them, really. It’s must that there are so many of them. In IT circles (and IT people are the worst offenders) they’re called TLAs: Three-letter Acronyms. Arrrgggh!

  • I’ll give you three guess what CKS are to many photographers.

    (And I do have more to contribute on the subject of CJs but I can’t promise I’ll get back to it.)

  • TLA is Three Letter Abbreviation, NOT Acronym. Yes, I’m aware that most people use “Acronym” in this context. Most people are wrong.

    An acronym is a word, like “scuba,” “radar,” or “laser,” which originated as an abbreviation. An acronym can be written and pronounced like any other word. Some traditionalists insist on writing words like SCUBA with all capital letters, but the word can be fully understood and easily spoken either way.

    Most TLAs are not words, just as TLA itself is not a word. The only way to pronounce TLA is to recite the letters: Tee Ell Ay. If I tried writing “tla” in lower case letters, its pronunciation would be unclear and it would just look like nonsense. Most TLAs fall into this category, and are therefore merely abbreviations, not acronyms.

  • One of my favorites is “fubar.” I recall reading somewhere that its roots are in WWII military slang.

  • So it’s not Calvin Klein?

  • “Citizen journalist” sounds a lot more imposing than “blogger.”

    It’s an excellent minker for the type of real work that citizens must do to counter corporate-controlled media.

    Good work, keep writing, and FTW (the ‘t’ is this, the ‘w’ war …).