The rise of citizen journalism was inevitable. With all the new technologies we have in the 21st century, and all compacted onto one pocket size device such as an iPhone, everyone has the potential to become citizen journalists.
With the rise of of such technologies, we’ve seen the more traditional forms of news and media delivery change; and with it, the suffering of traditional journalism. The news broadcasts and newspapers no longer having the chance to report news first, as ordinary people such as you and I can capture videos and events as they happen, and have them on the internet for anyone in the world to see in a matter of seconds.
But saying all this, this won’t mean the end of professional journalism. People will always want to hear a professional account of events, and even if they find out first through citizen journalists, it is the actual news they will look to next to see the story.
Many journalists are worried that their career is in danger due to these ordinary people reporting their news stories. British journalist Andrew Marr refers to citizen journalism as having “nothing to do with journalism at all”, stating that bloggers seem to be “socially inadequate, pimpled, single, slightly seedy, bald, cauliflower-nosed, young men sitting in their mother’s basements and ranting… and that the so-called citizen journalism is the spewings and rantings of very drunk people late at night.”
Below is an image which too suggests what Andrew Marr thinks of citizen journalists.
A key recent event being the Boston Marathon Bombings. The world was alerted within minutes of the attack, witnesses on the scene uploading videos snapped on their phones as it happened.
It is evident in events such as these that citzen journalism is crucial to putting together all the pieces of a situation, and allows people to see real footage and to gain an actual depicition of what happened.
Without citizen journalism, thousands of fascinating stories would remain untold.