Citizen Journalism can flourish where mainstream journalists have been corrupted or censored by governments and corporations.
Writing in his new book, Revolution 2.0, Wael Ghonim said that social media armed pro democracy activists against the State’s “weapons of mass oppression”. During last year’s Arab Spring demonstrations in Egypt, the internet was used to keep activist organisers at arms length from security forces.
Ghonim, an Egyptian born Google executive, operated out of the relative safety of Dubai, while he ran his virtual campaign against the Egyptian government. When he did come home to Egypt, prior to the major demonstrations on January 25, 2011, he was promptly disappeared by security forces who isolated him and subjected him to psychological tortures. Google meanwhile campaigned for his release. More…
Mainstream journalism has failed the public interest, reckons author, Martin Hirst. Citizen journalism is too feeble to provide a viable alternative. The future looks grim.
Fortunately, Dr Hirst believes that pessimism of the intellect should be coupled with optimism of the will.
Dr Martin Hirst is an Associate Professor of Journalism at the Auckland University of Technology. A former Sydney journalist, he’s previously co-published a book on journalism ethics.
Hirst’s new book,News 2.0, asks whether journalism can survive the internet? His brief is broad and his arguments impeccable. But ultimately he provides only qualified answers. More…