Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Blogs VS Journalism

I’ve opined on this issue. But couldn’t resist further exploration of the contrast of Blogging and Journalism.

It appears that Yahoo is moving to elevate Blogging as a news source.

Yahoo News, the world's most popular Internet media destination, is set to begin testing on Tuesday an expanded news search system that includes not only news stories and blogs but also user-contributed photos and related Web links. The move will further stoke the debate between media traditionalists who want to maintain strict walls between news and commentary and those who argue such boundaries are elitist and undervalue the work of "citizen journalists."

Predictably, there is push back from the theoretical world:

Robert Thompson, a media studies professor at Syracuse University, said it was important to preserve the distinctions between professional journalism and personal commentary.

He defined professional journalism as reporting which adheres to standards of accuracy and writing subjected to an editorial process, and all done with an eye to journalistic ethics, although he said journalism often falls short of these goals.

But media critic Jeff Jarvis (www.buzzmachine.com) disagrees:

Jarvis, who is a former TV critic for TV Guide and People magazines, mocked the notion that journalists live by a shared set of professional standards, that they are better trained or more trustworthy than the anyone-can-join blog movement.

"What made the voice of the people somehow less important than the paid professional journalist?" he asked. "You don't need to have a degree, you don't need to have a paycheck, you don't need to have a byline," Jarvis said.

"If you inform the public, you are committing an act of journalism," he declared.


In the marketplace of ideas, do we really need arbitrary definitions in a form of “the good journalism seal of approval?”

I know BS when I see it. The world of information is being transformed as we sit. I called Dan Rather “Tyrannosaurus Rather” because of his inability to recognize the inevitable.

Embrace the inevitable.