Wednesday, December 4, 2013

*poof!* you're a journalist

I majored in Communication Studies at UCLA.  Then I wrote for The Los Angeles Times.  But I never thought of myself as a journalist.  I didn't think a stringer covering local school districts was on par with professionals whose Pulitzer Prize-worthy writing chops and Edward R. Murrow-like ethics brought us some of the most important and compelling stories of our time.

Times have changed, and I've changed my mind.  These days anyone with investigative social media skills and a writer's "voice" can find an audience hungry for stories that the corporate media doesn't cover.  Anyone can break a major story before major news outlets.  Consider the fact that Syrian use of chemical weapons was revealed by an "unemployed blogger" sitting at home in front of Twitter and YouTube in England.  According to a BBC producer, "this guy in Leicester has broken more stories than most journalists do in a career."  Even the raid in which Osama Bin Laden was killed was (inadvertently) live Tweeted by this (other) guy (who graduated from Preston University! :).

This bodes well for citizen journalism like In Loco Politico.

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