Keeping up with Citizen Journalists

A topic that has been stuck on my mind is the battle professional journalists must face against the “citizen journalist” referred to by Dan Gillmore in Mediactive (4.2). As technology is progressing and complex devices are more attainable by the average citizen, it is more common for people to capture images of an event they are witnessing or even to write a few words about it and immediately post it to their Twitter or Facebook accounts. This means that information, although it is not very detailed, is getting out to the public before professional journalists even hear about the incident. News is traveling much faster as a result to this. Yes, society needs the professionals to provide in depth reports on the story, but by the  time they have the chance to do this the public is already moving onto another Tweeted event, and the interest on the previous Tweet is often lost. As a result, journalists must provide their stories much quicker than they have in the past. Could this be a cause of the increasingly visible unreliable news articles? What are some of the ways that journalists handle this situation? Or, in your opinion, is this even a conflict?


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