Citizen journalists, friend or foe?: MMJ week 6

Citizen journalism surely is not the answer but an added feature to the convergence in journalism.

It has certainly made a mark on online journalism more than print I think. This however comes with the help of social networks like FB, Twitter, etc.

Remember the Pakistani who tweeted hearing helicopters near his place which said it was unusual, it actually turned out to be the helicopter that was carrying the famous ‘Seal Team 6’ during operation ‘Geronimo’ who killed Osama bin Laden in his safe house.

He was not tweeting it for news but international media picked it up and requested to interview him. Incidental maybe, but it went to be a story that was carried by newsroom across the globe.

In the Philippines the same case is happening, newsrooms are now monitoring social networks and picking up on post of private individuals, so citizen send photo and videos direct to newsrooms for free.

Citizen journalism in the country (Philippines) is very successful especially in times of calamity, networks make a living out of pictures and text from citizen who sends it directly to the newsroom or newsrooms pick them up on social networks. What I hate about some networks is that they take photos from citizen with their permission (I hope) and put watermarks on them without even paying for it, are they breaching ethics here?

Whatever the case, citizen journalist should be paid maybe not the way they pay regular employee but pay, pay something in exchange for the use of their pictures, video or text because networks make millions out of it, ‘pay it forward’ as the saying goes.

CNN last November sacked several photo journalists in favor of their citizen journalist program, iReport.

So are they (new networks/agencies) making money out of citizen journalist? yes, news are products they produce and primary sell.

Citizen journalist will stay and in a way good competition for professional journalist.

Week 6: MMJ-convergence

Brave little girl

Aside from the safari adventure with the tigers, crocs, wild pigs and other safari animals, Zoobic Safari is now offering a new attraction and once its finished you will fly through the safari fields literally.

My daughter Nica who is five tag along with me and to my amazement enjoyed the zip line more than the safari tour. She insisted that we try the zip line. You can hear her wiiiii…. in the video.

Multimedia, connectivity and the Holy Grail: Week 5

This year Samsung announced its smart TV products with its stunning screen and cloud connectivity, it can also hook up to the internet.

FB, twitter, and the whole internet including youtube can now be accessed through the smart TV. So what’s in it for the journalism world? For one convergence in the newsroom anchored on the internet, and as DJ Clark mention in his first intro on multimedia, he said TV is the Holy Grail of multimedia journalism.

Now you’re probably asking what’s this got to do with week 5 in our convergence class, well, with the advent of smart TV now entering the living room, multimedia journalist can now showcase their stuff not only in their websites, blogs, youtube or vimeo, now we have a chance to showcase our craft on those new smart TV via the internet.

So what’s the convergence success story? Here’s a quote from John Naugthon from an article posted in the guardian.co.uk says

“For the last two decades, the computing and media industries have been intoning their own version of “plastics”. They call it “convergence”. It’s all based on the realisation that, since the 1990s, most media – print, audio, video, graphics – have been reduced to the lowest common denominator: bits, the ones and zeroes of binary arithmetic. If you examine the contents of your computer’s hard drive – or your iPod’s flash memory – all you will see are bits and there’s no immediate way of knowing whether a particular bitstream is a portion of an email message, a photograph, a song or a video.

“Finally, after these two decades of promise, we might now have reached a tipping point in this convergence story.” Full story here

So if that is the case are we now entering the final stage of convergence? Surely we have proven that we have passed the stages of the print to web, the print to web to mobile and tablets and the evolution of journalist who now can basically do everything by themselves. Will we now produce more visuals to incorporate and cope with the introduction of smart TV? Will we see more of the like of Dan Fung Dennis? Who shoots documentary by himself without any team or crew?

I still leave you this question, when will convergence end? =)

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