Monday, April 5, 2010

Assignment 6

Digital Distribution

When I first saw the phrase “citizen journalism,” the first person to come to mind was my Nana. It seems that she fills her entire day with watching the news. I, on the other hand, don’t watch the news. I just feel it is depressing and don’t want to bring down my morale. Although I make no effort to consider local news on television and in the newspaper, I skim across various topics on the internet, when I check my email. However, my most reliable source is none other than, Nana! She feels the need to update me on the newly reported news. Well actually, she assumes I have already seen it, asking me “Did you see blah blah blah?” or “You know that [insert animal flu] is going around, you need to be careful.” So, despite my intentions to miss the depressing news, she still feels me in on what’s going on in the city. My Nana is playing the role of a citizen journalist. She takes the news, adds her own comprehension and perception of the news and then she spreads it to other through word of mouth. I cannot knock my Nana, though, for her method of journalism. I am also involved in citizen journalism. Topics that interest me mostly consist of entertaining topics. I have a twitter page where I share random, funny, and/or interesting news I have heard that day.

Other organizations are adapting to digital media by offering news on the internet. Twitter and Facebook pages are also a way such organizations promote themselves along with updated news. By choosing to “follow” such organizations or corporations will allow their latest news to appear on you news feed. For the better, there is an expansion of those who receive media. For those busy individuals, the time is not available to sit and devote time to gaining access of the latest news. However, that same busy individual will tweet for hours. Various organizations can get their news out to more individuals with the digital expansion. The only pro is that with many media outtakes, it makes it difficult for individuals who are not in front of a computer screen all day. These individuals have a limited way of accessing information. So the good news is that the long tail allows for more individuals, but the people who get news are limited. For example, my Nana doesn’t go online to find her news; she is strictly a television news watcher.


Pros: larger audience, cheaper, environment friendly (no trees for paper), quickly distributed, younger audience, staying afloat in a world of technology

Cons: unable to reach non-computer savvy individuals, job downsizing, more dependence on electronics, people only get bits of the news

In Ten Years… there will be a greater coverage online for news spread. I hope these “web creators” realized everything does well in moderation. Print journalism may be the old fashioned way but it may prove to be a good way to share news rather than posting everything on the internet.

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  1. I also do not watch the news because it only seems to show bad things and makes everything look so bad. I just read the headlines on my yahoo email since they pop up anyways. I like how you used the example of your Nana as a citizen journalist - I never thought of it in quite that way before. I thought of it more as actually writing something or photographing or videotaping, but word of mouth can also be considered citizen journalism if you think about it. Very interesting!

  2. I think we all have a limited way of gathering information. Whether we ignore the TV news and just read tweets and blogs or we ignore the internet and just watch CNN, we are missing something. We need perspective on the news, we need to get the input from news anchors, editorials, tweeters, and bloggers! It is evident either way, that news takes up a large part of our day and the way that it is exported does have an impact on the person who internalizes it.