Friday, April 2, 2010

journalism, redefined?

TechCrunch reports on a PR Newswire study that suggests that the majority of bloggers consider themselves journalists though only a fifth of them found their blogging to be their major source of income. What's interesting to me is whether these bloggers are reporters who are blogging as part of the job; journalists who have been laid off and are now blogging to make ends meet (and apparently not getting it done); or random bloggers who CALL themselves journalists -- because they can.

I also wonder about the use of social media reported below. Do traditional-media journalists use it less because they are not as tech-savvy or progressive? Or because they question the credibility of the sources?

In any event, is all this changing the definition of what we call journalism?

From the study:

Blogger/Social Media Perception & Influence
The majority of bloggers now view themselves as journalists – 52%. This is a marked increase from 2009 when just one in three had the same opinion. Yet, despite viewing themselves as professional, only 20% derive the majority of their income from their blog work; a 4% increase from 2009.

Among the total respondents, the use of blogs and social networks for research increased significantly in 2010 as compared to 2009; however this spike appears to be skewed by online magazine/news reporters and bloggers. While 91% of bloggers and 68% of online reporters "always" or "sometimes" use blogs for research, only 35% of newspaper and 38% of print magazine journalists suggested the same.

This divergence was also seen when using social networks for research. Overall, 33% of respondents indicated using such assets, but blogger usage (48%) was greater than newspaper (31%) and print magazine (27%).

This contrast is even sharper when considering Twitter. 64% of bloggers and 36% of online reporters confirmed employing Twitter as a research tool. On the other hand, newspaper reporters (19%) and print magazine reporters (17%) appear to find less value in using Twitter for research. Newspaper and print magazine reporters also source Twitter less frequently than their media counterparts, with 19% and 22% saying they have used a Twitter post in a story. This is sharply different from bloggers (55%), online magazine/news (42%) and even TV news (48%).

1 comment:

Kristina Woodcock said...

It would be interesting to see a breakdown of these individuals' credentials in journalism to find out if they have any professional background. The new trends of blogging and citizen journalism make it easier for people to access a variety of opinions and views on issues and events. However, the objectivity of these bloggers is obviously very questionable.