To Blog or Not To Blog? That is the Question

This week we were given the assignment to write about citizen media. Being as I am now a blogger myself I am very torn about the idea of citizen media. I am a skeptic at heart and feel that journalists have a ethical responsibility to inform the public in a unbiased and accurate fashion. It seems that in today’s media world journalists now have to share the stage with bloggers. Bloggers don’t always have the same ethical obligation as journalists. In some cases they just use their platform to spout off their opinion without taking the time to determine if they are accurate or not.

By no means am I saying all bloggers are like this (talk about the pot calling the kettle black). This is exactly why I am so torn. As a public speaking teacher I tell my students to make sure they are using reputable, accurate, unbiased sources for their speeches. The problem is we are entering an age in which it is getting harder and harder to tell who is accurate and unbiassed, let alone reputable. I also tell my students that if they are not sure if the information is correct then look other places to find the same data. If you can’t find it anywhere else then it probably isn’t completely accurate. 

Of course my students are looking for things like is chocolate all bad, or how to make a green roof. It is possible that in the future of the media we will have bloggers reporting on information that no one else will report on. It is also possible that the line between journalist and blogger will be blurred even more than they already are. As bloggers don’t have the same ethical responsibility, they also don’t have to fight with the idea of being a business. They don’t have to worry about advertisers pulling their funding, or an editor pulling a piece that might upset the shareholders. It is possible that they day may come where bloggers are accepted into the journalistic fold and may become even more reputable than some journalists. All I know is that I will continue to take my own advise and check all my facts. 

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3 Responses to To Blog or Not To Blog? That is the Question

  1. pamelakoneal says:

    I too, am like you, torn. I see both the benefits and the weaknesses of citizen journalism. And to be quite honest with you, as someone who holds a degree in print journalism, I’m a little upset that someone who does not have the same education I have can blog. Now, I’m not saying they are not just as intelligent as me or that they writing is inferior to mine. What I’m saying here is that I feel like my degree does not mean as much as it used to. Perhaps that is part of the reason I decided to go on and get my master’s. I just hope and I think it will happen, that as we become more and more used to finding our content on the Internet we are also more picky about that content we find.

  2. richi713 says:

    I think this is a difficult issue to deal with, since there is no exact border between journalist and blogger. Blogs are usually published,and everone have chance to see other people’s blogs and stole their ideas. Thus, I think bloggers may need to have ethical responsibilities of their ideas in the future; at the same time, I wonder that seeking for ethicla responsibilities is to take away blogger’s right to write their opinions freely.

  3. Bloggers contribute negatively and positively in a way only compared to the domino effect. While bloggers often times reference where information is originated from, network television, web articles, print media, there are more occurrences in which they cannot support their information. Some blogs fail to provide substantial news sources and therefore, cannot easily fact check or conduct further information gathering.
    While I don’t think the general public should rely solely on blogs for news, the purpose it serves is to stimulate thinking and empower people who would normally not read news articles, to do so. It can be responsible for showing people where to go for news. The downfall is evident when bloggers fail to make their method of information gathering transparent.
    Blogs that fail to provide consumers with their sources should never be trusted as viable resources for information. Anyone worthy of being trusted has references that will vouch that they are credible. News is no exception.

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