The evolution of citizen journalism

Posted: March 10, 2013 in Uncategorized

The Storify assignment helped me to understand how Twitter and Facebook can be used as tools for citizen journalism and social activism.  The power displayed by simply being able to search and add tweets and posts to a story for a quick reference makes the whole idea of it a lot simpler.  However there are also downsides because some of this information may be slightly skewed or inaccurate.

            I used music piracy as my topic of discussion for my Storify article and found it extremely simple and easy to use, almost easier than setting up my blog! Many people whom I have talked to on a regular basis (mostly age 30+) are against the likes of Twitter and Facebook.  I believe that in certain ways these social media sites are dangerous and can be harmful to one’s career.  Storify helped display, and hopefully more people will see, that social media can be used effectively to provide back up to articles.  I simply used a few tweets and posts to back up my stance on music piracy.  However I carefully selected and conducted further research to ensure the sources of these tweets and posts were at least somewhat qualified.

            The new opportunities given for social activism are mind boggling.  I remember when Hurricane Sandy happened there were numerous tweets and donations which would fund Sandy relief and assist those in need.  Without social media we are unable to transfer this information so quickly to so many people.  Some people get there info from the news however younger adults such as myself often watch the news.  Therefore Twitter and Facebook are strong sources of information and provide the ability for social activism for the younger generations.

            As well, social media may inspire a new generation of reporting for younger students.  This provides an excellent method for students to practice their journalism if social media is used effectively, rather than a distraction; which it is for the most part.  I myself sometimes tweet about personal matters while other times I may tweet or post about news.  This news is typically about sports because of my program and my interests in life; however anyone has the power to discuss anything they want that can be relevant to society.  Therefore my overall stance on the power of social media to open doors for citizen journalism and social activism is that it can be extremely effective and we should use it to our full advantage to make society aware of ongoing news and global issues.

            Secondly is a more in depth discussion of my personal use of citizen journalism and whether these new opportunities encourage my participation in citizen journalism.  As I previously stated I have been an everyday user of Facebook and Twitter for my thoughts and news, therefore I had already been familiar with these.  However once I was able to use Storify it encouraged me to practice my journalism skills at a practical level, rather than having to research journals, books, etc.  I definitely think this would encourage more people to write articles and use the tools on Storify to display opinions and facts.

            Module 7 gave me the freedom to choose a topic of my choice and conduct research in a different manner to help support my stance.  I could use tweets and posts which ultimately encouraged me to create a well thought article (I hope).  Therefore if everyone is given the same opportunity and is made aware of Storify and similar websites, more social activism will be evident and thus the citizens of the world will be more participative and involved in ongoing issues and events that affect our future.  I believe that more of my social media will be tiered towards providing information rather than personal matters so that I can use these tools to their full potential.  If others do the same we can continue to develop citizen journalism and thus make everyone more aware.

cheers.

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Comments
  1. seancaley says:

    I like your reference to using Twitter to help Hurricane Sandy relief. You’re right; Twitter provides a quick way to transfer information to people on a global scale. In relation to the relief fund for Hurricane Sandy, I recall recently Bell had a promotion to create awareness for depression. They used the hash tag ‘#BellLetsTalk’ for this, and every Tweet with that hash tag Bell said they would donate 10 cents to mental health programs. I thought this was very neat for a company to do. Bell took an issue that many people are not familiar with and created a social platform to create awareness and buzz. There were even many celebrities and athletes partaking in this promotion, which made it stand out a little more personally to me. Once again, I agree with you Anthony that Twitter creates a way to transfer information quickly. Some may argue it has cons, but in cases such as the ones mention, it clearly has benefits.

  2. Marnie Gontovnick says:

    Your blog was well orchestrated in the fact that you covered both the pros and cons of citizen journalism. You stated that, “I believe that in certain ways these social media sites are dangerous and can be harmful to one’s career” as people do not always use the Internet appropriately. But then again you state that it is also great for the younger generation as news and information has never been exposed in such a fast and efficient manner. I agree with both of these points and think that when social journalism is used properly it could develop skills and allow people to become more aware and knowledgeable about local or international news. I think you summed it up pretty well when saying, “Therefore my overall stance on the power of social media to open doors for citizen journalism and social activism is that it can be extremely effective and we should use it to our full advantage to make society aware of ongoing news and global issues.”

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