Since the advent of web 2.0 and the rise of the phenomenon called participatory journalism mean that the role of the journalist that we know today becoming non-existent? A species becoming extinct if we do not step in.
As pointed out by Stephen Tanner during this weeks lecture that, due to the very nature of the Internet and how it is used, it is obvious that the relationship between the journalist and the reader has changed. No longer are journalists the ones in control of the flow of information being made available. Traditional journalism online has steered away from being just a one-way form of communication between the individual and the journalist. Journalist are no longer the gatekeepers of information, we are!
As with any form of change that takes place, there always individuals that embrace or resist. Quandt outlines in his 2011 journal article title: ‘Understanding a new phenomenon: the significance of participatory journalism’ that while most of the print journalists that he interview believed that there is an added benefit to including user-generated content for online journalism, many feared that in doing so undermines the very basis of journalism.
Those that are against participatory journalism stress that there is a danger to the profession, to professional norms such as accuracy and to the jobs of journalist. On the other hand though those that are in support of participatory journalism state that it allows for a widening of opinions and a larger range of ideas and beliefs as well as generating public discussion.
A great quote that is found in Quandt’s article, which states that
Anyone can do journalism, but not everything that is being done is journalism. Doing journalism requires following some rules, applying rigor. You have to fact- check and try to keep a more or less neutral standpoint. I f any person is acting this way, you can surely say they are doing journalism. Which is not the same as saying that whatever people send or whatever a news medium publishes is journalism.
In saying this, I truly feel that journalism as we know it may evolve slightly as with all things in life, but it will never be lost.