RISE OF CITIZEN
JOURNALISM – PART 2
Principles of News
Mayborn School of Journalism
Professor Neil Foote
2

Citizen Journalism Pros

Cons

• Expanded coverage

• Unreliable

• More diverse

• Potentially fraudulent

coverage
• ...
3

Defining Citizen Journalism
1. Everybody is a journalist

2. Serve as a resource for professional

journalists
3. A too...
4

Everybody is a journalist
• Greater pressure on professionals to get it

right
Male, 23:
Now we are under heavy scrutin...
5

Resource to professionals
• Providing real-time information on news

happening where reporters are not
• Twitter, Faceb...
6

CNN‘s iReport – The Vetting Process
• Lila King, participation director for CNN

Digital,
• Focused on inviting CNN's g...
7

CNN‘s iReport – The Vetting Process
• Lila King on the 5th Anniversary:

• http://www.poynter.org/latest-

news/mediawi...
8

The ‗Vetting‘ Process
Videos
submitted

8%
submissions
accepted

500
submitted
daily

Producers
Contact
Contributors

i...
9

Verify, Verify, Verify
• Contact contributor directly
• Use other reporters/producers who have sources

on the ground
E...
10

• ―CNN wasn‘t really covering that story at all

until we started seeing an outpouring of
contributions of video and p...
11

Verify, Verify, Verify
• Use CNN subject-matter experts, affiliates

and local news reports
• Confirm photos – checkin...
12

Engagement = More content
• Lilia King:
• News gatherers & curators
• Dan Gilmour:
• Collaborators, conversationalists...
13

Citizen Journalism Requires Skills
• Barry Parr, founding editor of

Coastsider, San Mateo, Calif. (former
San Jose Me...
14

Citizen Journalism Requires Skills cont.
• Barry Parr continued:

• To do ‗citizen journalism‘ well, you

must remain ...
15

The ‗Gatekeeper‘ Role & Citizen
Journalism - Authors Ali & Fahmy
• Editors / producers sift through the
content before...
16

The ‗Gatekeeper‘ Role & Citizen
Journalism - Authors Ali & Fahmy
The Gatekeeper Theory – traditional
definition:
• The...
17

The ‗Gatekeeper‘ Role & Citizen
Journalism
• Iran June 2009: ‗The Twitter Revolution‘ –

Ahmad Ahmednejihad v. the ‗Gr...
18

The ‗Gatekeeper‘ Role & Citizen
Journalism cont.
• Libya, Feb. 2011 – the fall of President

Muammar Gaddafi
• FLASHPO...
19

―The World Is Watching‖
• Michael Fancher, retired longtime executive

editor, Seattle Times:
• ―When everyone can be ...
20

Walter Williams: ‗The Journalists‘ Creed‘
1914:
―I believe in the profession of journalism.
I believe that the public ...
21

What‘s the ‗new ethic‘ of public trust?
• If mobile devices, social media and

citizen journalism are here to stay,
me...
22

The New World of Public Trust
• See public trust not as an abstraction,

but with an abiding desire to connect on
a hu...
23

The new public trust cont.
• Be independent without being indifferent or

hostile.
• Feel a responsibility to help the...
24

The New World of Public Trust

Michael R. Fancher was until 2008 the longtime
executive editor of The Seattle Times. F...
25

Social media in context
• Citizen journalism overrated, over

emphasized
• Does not cause events: It‘s another tool to...
26

Mona Eltahawy on the "Twitter Revolutions"

During the Egyptian revolution, at least 65,000 people
heard every hashtag...
27

Geneva Overholser: The Missing Ingredient
―I‘m not suggesting that journalism—
as a word, a concept, and a craft—
has ...
28

Geneva Overholser: The Missing Ingredient
Our job is to keep an eye on the public interest.
Bringing our journalistic ...
29

Today‘s Discussion Question
A local group of investors has given $1
million to launch a new website for North
Texas. T...
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Rise ofcitizenjournalism part 2(3)

  1. 1. RISE OF CITIZEN JOURNALISM – PART 2 Principles of News Mayborn School of Journalism Professor Neil Foote
  2. 2. 2 Citizen Journalism Pros Cons • Expanded coverage • Unreliable • More diverse • Potentially fraudulent coverage • Real time • Up close, personal • Engaging readers/viewers • Unfiltered or a hoax • Not verified • Editors/producers Loss of control • Too subjective • Unprofessional
  3. 3. 3 Defining Citizen Journalism 1. Everybody is a journalist 2. Serve as a resource for professional journalists 3. A tool for professional journalism 4. Catalyst to develop stronger ties between journalists and citizens/community 5. Journalist standards still relevant Source: Shifting boundaries: Objectivity, citizen journalism and tomorrow's journalists, Bolette B. Blaagaard
  4. 4. 4 Everybody is a journalist • Greater pressure on professionals to get it right Male, 23: Now we are under heavy scrutiny from everyone. If I do a mistake on my story, my readers will be able to comment on the mistake, identify it, correct the mistake, and if I don‘t pay attention to it, I will be a bad journalist and my story goes from a static product, it transforms itself into a plurality(?) that is constantly changing, evolving, due to the contribution of every citizen. Source: Shifting boundaries: Objectivity, citizen journalism and tomorrow's journalists, Bolette B. Blaagaard
  5. 5. 5 Resource to professionals • Providing real-time information on news happening where reporters are not • Twitter, Facebook, texts replace The AP, Reuters • Creates tension for reporters/editors/produces grounded in objectivity, unbiased • What if … the pictures showing police beating up a person, but don’t show what provoked it?
  6. 6. 6 CNN‘s iReport – The Vetting Process • Lila King, participation director for CNN Digital, • Focused on inviting CNN's global audiences to participate in the news • Launched 2007 • ―Rigorous, time-consuming‖ • Add context and analysis • Tools to better prepare ‗citizen journalists‘
  7. 7. 7 CNN‘s iReport – The Vetting Process • Lila King on the 5th Anniversary: • http://www.poynter.org/latest- news/mediawire/141269/ireport-turns-5citizen-journalism-%E2%80%98at-thecore%E2%80%99-of-cnn%E2%80%99scoverage-of-big-news/
  8. 8. 8 The ‗Vetting‘ Process Videos submitted 8% submissions accepted 500 submitted daily Producers Contact Contributors iReport Desk C O M M = U N I T Y 1mm Registered iReporters, 2.4 mm monthly unique visitors as of May 2012
  9. 9. 9 Verify, Verify, Verify • Contact contributor directly • Use other reporters/producers who have sources on the ground EXAMPLE: • Videos starting pouring in of protests in Ibadan, Nigeria • Contacted y Boma Tai, a 24-year-old pharmacist • Protests prompted, in part, due to skyrocketing fuel prices • He was participating in the protest • With help of CNN International reporters/producers, they created a comprehensive report on protests
  10. 10. 10 • ―CNN wasn‘t really covering that story at all until we started seeing an outpouring of contributions of video and photos and people writing into iReport over and over for days,‖ said Lila King, participation director for CNN Digital. ―It made us say, ‗Gosh, you know we really need to be paying attention to this.‘ ‖ SOURCE: http://www.poynter.org/latest-news/regret-the-error/160045/how-cnns-ireport-verifies-its-citizen-content/
  11. 11. 11 Verify, Verify, Verify • Use CNN subject-matter experts, affiliates and local news reports • Confirm photos – checking metadata of images to make sure pictures were taken win the actual location • TinEye.com: Reverse Photo Search
  12. 12. 12 Engagement = More content • Lilia King: • News gatherers & curators • Dan Gilmour: • Collaborators, conversationalists and listeners • Steve Safran, director of digital media for New England Cable News: • „Participatory Journalism‟ is a conversation with citizens about news – carefully edited, filtered – not “1,000 conversations at once”
  13. 13. 13 Citizen Journalism Requires Skills • Barry Parr, founding editor of Coastsider, San Mateo, Calif. (former San Jose Mercury News editor • Created a local news website • It‘s hard to get people to contribute • It‘s easy to get people to return a call when they like your coverage
  14. 14. 14 Citizen Journalism Requires Skills cont. • Barry Parr continued: • To do ‗citizen journalism‘ well, you must remain committed to: • Accuracy • Being factual • The truth • Being thorough • Being transparent
  15. 15. 15 The ‗Gatekeeper‘ Role & Citizen Journalism - Authors Ali & Fahmy • Editors / producers sift through the content before it‘s published • Only a small percentage is published • User Generated Content (UGC) subjected to same rules as traditional news • Majority of UGC perceived to be entertainment and ‗soft news‘ Source: Gatekeeping & Citizen Journalism – The use of social media during the recent uprisings in Iran, Egypt & Libya
  16. 16. 16 The ‗Gatekeeper‘ Role & Citizen Journalism - Authors Ali & Fahmy The Gatekeeper Theory – traditional definition: • The selection process of choosing stories and/or visuals that follow the organizations‘ news routines and narratives (White, 1950). • NOW: The biggest social media stories get big headlines in traditional media Source: Gatekeeping & Citizen Journalism – The use of social media during the recent uprisings in Iran, Egypt & Libya
  17. 17. 17 The ‗Gatekeeper‘ Role & Citizen Journalism • Iran June 2009: ‗The Twitter Revolution‘ – Ahmad Ahmednejihad v. the ‗Green Revolution‘ • Flashpoint: The murder of Neda Agha- Soltan on YouTube • Egypt, January 2011: ‗The Facebook Revolution‘ • Flashpoint: The death of business man Khaled Saeed • Coverage by Al-Jazeera and other media validated movement as legitimate Source: Gatekeeping & Citizen Journalism – The use of social media during the recent uprisings in Iran, Egypt & Libya
  18. 18. 18 The ‗Gatekeeper‘ Role & Citizen Journalism cont. • Libya, Feb. 2011 – the fall of President Muammar Gaddafi • FLASHPOINT: After he reigned for nearly more than 50 years, protestors challenged his leadership, taking to the streets and social media. • Pictures, videos, tweets, posts: shared by millions via Facebook, Twitter, YouTube Source: Gatekeeping & Citizen Journalism – The use of social media during the recent uprisings in Iran, Egypt & Libya
  19. 19. 19 ―The World Is Watching‖ • Michael Fancher, retired longtime executive editor, Seattle Times: • ―When everyone can be a publisher, what distinguishes the journalist?‖ • Walter Williams, founder of the University of Missouri journalism school: • Journalism is grounded in the public trust Source: Michael Fancher, ‗The 21st Century Journalist‘s Creed‖
  20. 20. 20 Walter Williams: ‗The Journalists‘ Creed‘ 1914: ―I believe in the profession of journalism. I believe that the public journal is a public trust; that all connected with it are, to the full measure of their responsibility, trustees for the public; that acceptance of a lesser service than the public service is betrayal of this trust.‖ Source: Michael Fancher, ‗The 21st Century Journalist‘s Creed‖
  21. 21. 21 What‘s the ‗new ethic‘ of public trust? • If mobile devices, social media and citizen journalism are here to stay, media have to adapt • Public engagement is the answer • Instead of fearing ―public engagement‖, media need to embrace it to survive Source: Michael Fancher, ‗The 21st Century Journalist‘s Creed‖
  22. 22. 22 The New World of Public Trust • See public trust not as an abstraction, but with an abiding desire to connect on a human level • See the public not as an audience but as a community, of which journalism is a vital part • See the Internet not just as a new medium for communication, but as a new way of networking among people, with journalism at the hub. Source: Michael Fancher, ‗The 21st Century Journalist‘s Creed‖
  23. 23. 23 The new public trust cont. • Be independent without being indifferent or hostile. • Feel a responsibility to help the public be smart consumers of news. • Recognize that journalism isn‘t just on behalf of the people, but in concert with them. • Public engagement can be the sustaining embodiment of Williams‘s belief that the supreme test of good journalism is the measure of its public service.
  24. 24. 24 The New World of Public Trust Michael R. Fancher was until 2008 the longtime executive editor of The Seattle Times. For the past year, he has been a fellow at the Reynolds Journalism Institute at the University of Missouri School of Journalism. Here he discusses how public engagement offers answers to the future of journalism. Source: Michael Fancher, ‗The 21st Century Journalist‘s Creed‖
  25. 25. 25 Social media in context • Citizen journalism overrated, over emphasized • Does not cause events: It‘s another tool to report them • Without ―live‖ events – civil unrest, assassinations, protests, there is no content
  26. 26. 26 Mona Eltahawy on the "Twitter Revolutions" During the Egyptian revolution, at least 65,000 people heard every hashtagged statement Egyptian-American journalist Mona Eltahawy shared on her popular Twitter account. In this video, she disputes the notion that ‗twitter‘ caused revolutions.
  27. 27. 27 Geneva Overholser: The Missing Ingredient ―I‘m not suggesting that journalism— as a word, a concept, and a craft— has gone away or is no longer important. ―I‘m saying that those of us who ground ourselves in what we know to be an ethically sound and civically essential mode of information gathering and information dissemination have to find a way to be in these conversations—whatever we call the conversations or ourselves.
  28. 28. 28 Geneva Overholser: The Missing Ingredient Our job is to keep an eye on the public interest. Bringing our journalistic values to these environments that have captured the imagination of millions is one of the most promising ways we have of serving that interest.” • -- Geneva Overholser, a veteran New York Times journalist, a 1986 Nieman Fellow, is the former director of the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School of Journalism.
  29. 29. 29 Today‘s Discussion Question A local group of investors has given $1 million to launch a new website for North Texas. The investors are news junkies, but are tired of the coverage they are seeing in current media. Based on our discussions of traditional journalism and citizen journalism, what would you create? Why?
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