11:05 am Jul. 25, 2012
The Lineup collects the media stories, big and small, that are on our radar each day.
Three cheers to Michael Barthel for pouring a little cold water on the overheated "crowdsourced citizen journalism" hype that emerged in the wake of the Aurora shooting.
Writing on Salon, Barthel argues:
Citizen journalism is doing more or less the exact same thing that traditional journalism has always done, except not as reliably or sustainably. Crowdsourced journalism doesn’t seem to do long-term investigative journalism well, nor does it do well at identifying and tracing large-scale societal problems, or high-level analyses of medical, scientific or financial news, the kind of things that require expertise. Instead, it’s really good at breaking news about shootings and war, the same “if it bleeds, it leads” coverage that the media is frequently criticized for overemphasizing.
[GigaOM's Mathew] Ingram points out that the worst inaccuracy to come out of the coverage was ABC’s claim that the gunman was a Tea Party member, but the Reddit thread contains major errors about the numbers and identities of the dead and the motivation for the shooting, as well as a large number of kitten pictures. The ABC flub was a bigger deal only because it was more visible; were Reddit to become a regular source for news, such errors would be magnified as well.
Morgan Jones, the 18-year-old who constructed the timeline and found the shooter’s picture, seems like he has a fantastic aptitude and temperament for journalism, and I hope he considers it as a career. But we can’t rely on an 18-year-old journalistic phenom coming out of the woodwork every time a major story breaks. For all of their problems, one of the great values of journalistic organizations is that they have people on salary whose job it is to be aware of what’s going on in a particular area of society, every day, all the time. ... With citizen journalism, the only things that get covered are the ones with a critical mass of posters large enough to properly crowdsource the story on an amateur basis; “klatchsourced journalism” doesn’t really make sense.
The rest is here.
In other news...
In another post-Aurora development: The Jessica Redfield Sports Journalism Scholarship Fund reached its $20,000 goal in a day. [Yahoo! News/The Lookout]
Victims' family members are urging members of the media not to use the shooter's name. [A.P.]
SHOCKER: 8 TABLOID TITANS CHARGED IN U.K. PHONE-HACKING SAGA [The New York Times]
Mitt Romney will have plenty of company from TV news journalists on his trip overseas. [The Huffington Post]
Jonah Peretti on BuzzFeed's strategy. [Chris Dixon]
Tim Armstrong talked up Patch on the heels of today's AOL earnings. [AllThingsD]
Meet BuzzFeed's new music editor. [The New York Observer]
A veteran Newsday reporter has been let go after 40 years with the paper. [Long Island Business News]
Quote approval does not fly at Bloomberg News. [Jim Romenesko]
But who needs "quote approval" when there's "article approval," anyway? [The Texas Observer]
More by this author:
- 'Village Voice' fires Michael Musto in yet another round of cuts
- 'New York Post' buyouts focus on 'loyal soldiers ... highest paid'