Are we all journalists?

Journalism is changing to become more social and participatory.

I recently went to see a relative, Stephen Ward, give a presentation about Media Ethics on the Digital Frontier at the University of British Columbia.

Ward is the director of the Center for Journalism Ethics at the University of Wisconsin, and his presentation was  incredibly interesting and thought-provoking, especially as our newspapers put more and more emphasis on engaging readers through the Internet.

Ward spoke about how the role of media is moving from publishing news from one person to another to linking communication. Whereas the older generations wanted a news leader who would give them the news, the younger generation is more participatory in the news — people want to share and engage, he explained.

You can see this in the way newspapers ask their readers to send them videos or photos and in the way reporters are using Twitter and Facebook  to connect with readers even more.

Ward says that journalism is changing to be social and participatory. And that’s a good thing. People participating in their news and being part of the process really is great. But this change does come with challenges.

One of the biggest challenges of journalism ethics in this new media seems to be defining what is the media and who is a journalist, if everyone is participating in the news. With so many newspapers adding blogs to their websites, are the ethics the same for bloggers and reporters? Lines become blurred, and shades of grey start appearing.

“Media is one, huge vague term, and it’s almost meaningless,” said Ward. “It’s so big now, it contains everyone. If everyone is a journalist, potentially we need to teach everyone that publishing has consequences.”

Whatever the answers are, it sure is an interesting time. There are so many possibilities. Even if we weren’t related, Ward’s talk would have made me excited to be a journalist in these times ­— and I hope you’re excited to be on this journey with us.

— Lindsay Chung

Just Posted

Ladysmith’s Pamela Anderson adds star power to B.C. Green Party town hall

Celebrity attended Nanaimo meeting Wednesday with representatives from U.S. environmental group

Going with the flow in River Tales

Crofton author documents many interesting experiences from her time on the Cowichan River

Paul Manly to host series of community meetings

The first meeting is scheduled for July 18, at the North Oyster Community Centre, 7:00pm - 8:30pm

Nanaimo Ladysmith education support workers reach tentative three-year deal

Union membership to vote on collective agreement on July 31

Island pickleball players perfectly prepared

Top-notch action at Fuller Lake Park in singles, doubles and mixed doubles

Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman sentenced to life in prison

Experts say he will likely wind up at the federal government’s Supermax prison in Florence, Colorado

Olympic softball qualifier gets $150K boost from provincial government

2019 Americas Qualifier to be held in Surrey from Aug. 25-Sept. 1

Gas price inquiry questions Trans Mountain capacity, company denies collusion

The first of up to four days of oral hearings in the inquiry continue in Vancouver

‘Benzos’ and fentanyl a deadly cocktail causing a growing concern on B.C. streets

Overdoses caused by benzodiazepines can’t be reversed with opioid-overdose antidote naloxone

Chinook retention begins on North Island, but amid new size limit

DFO calls measures ‘difficult but necessary’ following rockslide on Fraser River

Will you be celebrating national hotdog day with any of these crazy flavours?

The popularity of hotdogs spans generations, cultures

Former home of accused Penticton shooter vandalized

Ex-wife of man who is accused of murdering four people had her house vandalized

Injured humpback returns to waters near Comox a year later

Photographer spotted Ocular near Comox again and noticed the whale has been healing

Survivor of near-drowning in B.C. lake viewing life through new eyes

“If I died that day, the baby wouldn’t know his dad,” said 31-year-old Mariano Santander-Melo.

Most Read