Knight Center
Knight Center


New report revisits citizen journalism debate, calls for more training

The latest in a series of background papers commissioned by the Open Society Media Program summarizes recent debates about citizen journalism, and the need for a sharper definition of "citizen journalist" and the availability of more training.

In the study, "Mapping Digital Media: Citizen Journalism and the Internet," author Nadine Jurrat argues that citizen journalists already have become entrenched in the media landscape. "While some hail this opportunity to improve journalism, others fear that too much importance is placed on these personal accounts, undermining ethical standards and, eventually, professional journalism."

Jurrat, an independent media researcher, goes on to urge that if citizen journalists are to remain vibrant and relevant media contributors, more training should be made available so they can learn about ethics and the potential legal pitfalls. She notes organizations in South Korea and Iraq offer such training, while the Open Society Foundations and the Knight Foundation, in conjunction with journalism schools, are doing the same in the United States.

In addition to the study on citizen journalism, the Open Society Media Program series includes 10 more titles that cover a number of regions and issues, such as Mapping Digital Media: Mexico, authored by Rodrigo Gomez, Gabriel Sosa-Plata, Primavera Téllez Girón and Jorge Bravo.


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