Posts Tagged ‘professional vs. amateur’

AP Stylebook for citizen journalists

The AP Stylebook has been regarded as the “journalist’s bible” and a staple for professional news-reporting for years.  Now citizen journalists have their own bible too.

Yahoo will debut its style guide for the web, “The Yahoo! Style Guide: The Ultimate Sourcebook for Writing, Editing, and Creating Content for the Digital World” on July 6. According to TechCrunch:

“The company targets professional journalists, bloggers, technical writers, editors but also web developers, designers, small- and medium-size businesses, advertising and PR agencies and … newspapers folks.”

It is available in print for $21.99, or online for $14.84. Subjects range from proper punctuation and grammar to writing style for mobile devices. It appears to be an excellent addition to citizen journalists’ toolbox, and a boost to their credibility in the world of professional journalism.

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29

06 2010

Using the iPhone for video reporting

Rachel McAthy writes for Journalism.co.uk on the industry’s attitude toward the iPhone’s video capabilities.

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24

06 2010

Rushkoff: Tools and platforms don't make journalists

In a recent Neiman Report, Douglas Rushkoff takes a skeptical look at the changes in who is producing news online.  He clearly echoes some of the most common arguments against citizen journalism.

Rushkoff, who was a correspondent for Frontline’s Digital Nation series, charts the decline of media monarchs (“King George II, William Randolph Hearst, or even Rupert Murdoch”), and their replacement by amateurs who think their writing is to be “an unfiltered, pure gestalt of observation and self-expression.” The web, he argues, now prioritizes the individual’s immediate observation.

According to Rushkoff, the “gestalt” isn’t only not journalism, but a dangerous red herring.

…our misguided media revolutionaries are mistaking access to the tools for competency with the skills. Just because a kid now enjoys the typing skill and distribution network once exclusive to a professional journalist doesn’t mean he knows how to research, report or write. It’s as if a teenager who has played Guitar Hero got his hands on a real Stratocaster—and thinks he’s ready for an arena show.

The essay also comments on media ownership (that corporations still profit from individuals writing for free) and that those who have legitimate grievances with citizen-powered media are immediately dismissed as “elitists or Luddites.”

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16

06 2010