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Is This the Future of News?

Soulskill posted more than 6 years ago | from the power-to-the-people dept.

Media 147

WirePosted points us to a story discussing the future of news reporting. For over a year, CNN has been accepting user-generated news stories and posting the best of them for all to see. Earlier this week, CNN handed over the reins of iReport.com, allowing unfiltered and unedited content from anyone who cares to participate, provided it adheres to "established community guidelines". Analysts point to the amateur footage from the Virginia Tech shootings and the Minnesota bridge collapse as an example of the capabilities of distributed reporting. Will this form of user-driven reporting (with which we are well acquainted) come to challenge or supplant traditional new broadcasting?

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nt (1, Funny)

Dr. Cody (554864) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453402)

Dugg this.

Not just No (5, Insightful)

DynaSoar (714234) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453422)

... but HELL no.

"Will this form of user-driven reporting (with which we are well acquainted) come to challenge or supplant traditional new broadcasting?"

This can be done for free. That doesn't sell advertising. CNN et al. would never let that happen. Instead they're encapsulating the user generated stuff within their own domain where they can use it to support their ad money generating bread and butter. Not embedding this stuff within their own output would be more of a threat.

Re:Not just No (2, Insightful)

Bootle (816136) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453630)

And they save a butt-ton of money by not having to pay reporter's salaries to the chumps who submit stuff!

Re:Not just No (5, Insightful)

someme2 (670523) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453756)

Instead they're encapsulating the user generated stuff within their own domain where they can use it to support their ad money generating bread and butter. Not embedding this stuff within their own output would be more of a threat.
And they will still use all the best content in their mainstream news. You grant them cost free rights to all of the content you submit. It's in the terms of use. Consequently all of the really valuable footage can still be broadcast on CNN, in addition the stuff that has been found to work on ireport.com by popular vote.

It's perfect. They create a pre-screening room that tests all kinds of content and also makes some money, generates a few content gems (bridge collapse footage, etc.) every once in a while and that doesn't affect the serious/professional-flavour of their premium brand. Still they exploit the top content in all of their programs.

Now to really change the news business: Can't someone create a popular site that does auctions of valuable cell phone footage, with news companies as bidders? Stop giving away your content for free, people!

Re:Not just No (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22453990)

Now to really change the news business: Can't someone create a popular site that does auctions of valuable cell phone footage, with news companies as bidders? Stop giving away your content for free, people!

It won't work. As soon as you post the video clips online, the news companies will be able to use the footage on-air without compensation thanks to fair use rights. It goes both ways, y'know. You can try to limit their access to the footage via blind auction, but then people won't even really know what they're bidding on. The reason that will fail is pretty obvious.

Re:Not just No (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22454140)

Now to really change the news business: Can't someone create a popular site that does auctions of valuable cell phone footage, with news companies as bidders? Stop giving away your content for free, people!
I assume you feel the same way about Wikipedia and the **for profit** Wikia Search? Yes? Stop giving away your content for free? Hmmmm?

Re:Not just No (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22454462)

Stop giving away your content for free, people!

  Doesn't this count as blasphemy here on /.?
(Jokes!)

Scoopt.com (3, Interesting)

MacDork (560499) | more than 6 years ago | (#22455136)

Can't someone create a popular site that does auctions of valuable cell phone footage, with news companies as bidders? Stop giving away your content for free, people!
Someone has. [scoopt.com] Too bad CNN will still get most of the footage for free anyway.

Re:Not just No (0, Flamebait)

utopianfiat (774016) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453904)

"This can be done for free. That doesn't sell advertising"

Youtube, Slashdot, Digg, FARK, 4chan, and every other site that publishes user-reported stories must be in pretty dire straits considering how much bandwidth they use then.

Think first, then post.

Re:Not just No (5, Insightful)

sgt_doom (655561) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454164)

Naaaah....I really think this is the future of news:

The number of corporations dominating the US mainstream media:

1983 = 50

1993 = 14

2008 = 5

I'm no mathematician (2, Interesting)

Mateo_LeFou (859634) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454598)

But that definitely seems to be headed toward zero. Which is kinda the point of this whole thread?

Re:I'm no mathematician (1)

AiToyonsNostril (1082283) | more than 6 years ago | (#22455254)

I think his/her point was more along consolidations/purchases/merges than bankruptcies. The most this trends points to is a corporate news singularity owned by Murdock in a dozen or so years.

Re:Not just No (1)

CSMastermind (847625) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454680)

When I read that comment I was thinking: I wish there was a way to save my favorite slashdot comments. Maybe a firefox extension that would allow you to mark a comment you like and then you could go back and see all the comments you had marked. Or does that already exist?

Re:Not just No (2)

bipbop (1144919) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454916)

If you're being sarcastic, I completely missed it. Otherwise? Bookmarks.

Also a change in role (2, Insightful)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454796)

In the old days, people would read,watch or listen to the news as a civic duty to keep informed. Now news is just "infotainment" and is an eyeball magnet to attract eyes and advertisement revenue.

News competes with reality TV and sitcoms. Thus the dry facts are ditched in favor of "edgy" "newsworthy" stories with more interest value.

editorial function (4, Insightful)

globaljustin (574257) | more than 6 years ago | (#22455020)

... but HELL no

I agree, but for some slightly different reasons that I'll get to below.

This can be done for free. That doesn't sell advertising

I agree that the CNN's, MSNBC's, NYT's, et. al are guided in part by the profit motive, but news in and of itself goes far beyond just putting asses in the seats.

The free press, aka the newsmedia, is a *cornerstone* of our country. It is the 4th estate. The newsmedia, at its best, is a check on government power, and the founders of our country understood this, and promoted it.

Now, newsmedia isn't just reporting of facts, it involves editorial decisions. What stories to cover, how to cover them, how long the article should be, who is sent to cover the story, what the headline reads, and where the story is put are all the kind of core decisions that filter the news from a flood of uncategorized facts to a understandable informative piece of journalism. No one has enough time to filter all the day's information for themselves, that's why we have editors.

I am a harsh critic of today's mainstream media, as I imagine you might be. But let's not forget that we need the news done right in order for our country to operate properly. I hate tabloid journalism like Fox News more than most people because I work in the media, and I know how harmful it is for that network to call itself 'news'...it's entertainment, a plastic husk fashioned to resemble true journalism, but inside, instead of facts, there is nothing.

The answer to the question from TFA is definitely 'hell no' partially b/c of the reasons given in your post, but more importantly, because any sort of internet user provided journalism will inevitably need an editorial function for it to be usable.

A Million Monkeys (5, Insightful)

Gothmolly (148874) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453440)

You can put a million monkeys in front of typewriters, but yet AOL is nothing like Shakespeare. Just because Sally Jo Walmart captures something on her cellphone camera, and has the wherewithal to upload it to CNN, doesn't mean that its news, insightful, or "appropriate" to their nebulous guidelines. Nothing shocking or anti-establishment will ever air, nor will anything that scoops CNN itself. Its nice and bloggy and Web-two-oh, but so are Digg and Fark and Slashdot.

Re:A Million Monkeys (5, Insightful)

CrazedWalrus (901897) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453506)

I don't really get this elitism when it comes to the press. Why is it that somebody with a video camera of first-person experience is considered a monkey? Why are the highly-paid monkeys a thousand miles away, who are taking their lines from teleprompters more qualified than the monkey who was there? Because there might be grammar mistakes? Not everyone is an English major, but that doesn't make them a monkey.

Re:A Million Monkeys (4, Interesting)

ContractualObligatio (850987) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453648)

Why is it that somebody with a video camera of first-person experience is considered a monkey?

The incredible inaccuracy of eye witness accounts is well known. It is also a truism that the camera lies; a singe perspective can be dangerous. Grammar has nothing to do with it. Being objective does not mean elitism.

There's a helluva lot to be said for people interested in journalism to be able to earn a living from it, to earn respect for doing a good job, and for having an organisation that can support them, mentor them as they learn their trade, and get them direct access to the highest politicians in their country.

I personally don't think anyone has managed to beat the model of the UK's BBC, where the state-funded-but-independently-governed design allows for experienced commentary and challenging interviews without the ratings and advertisers having any influence. Not a perfect system, but the best I'm aware of. The BBC takes in photos and other submissions from the public, which allows the first person experience even where the network does not have resources on the ground, while still allowing for some editorial quality control.

Re:A Million Monkeys (3, Insightful)

CrazedWalrus (901897) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453880)

The incredible inaccuracy of eye witness accounts is well known. It is also a truism that the camera lies; a singe perspective can be dangerous.


Which is exactly why the news media has so much power. They choose the shots that say what they want them to say. Socially-driven content will contain multiple perspectives from multiple sources. It is therefore easier to compare and find the truth -- even if an individual perspective is incorrect.

There's a helluva lot to be said for people interested in journalism to be able to earn a living from it, to earn respect for doing a good job, and for having an organisation that can support them, mentor them as they learn their trade, and get them direct access to the highest politicians in their country.


That may be true, and I'm not saying necessarily that major media has no place at all. I'm just saying that socially-driven news sites are a necessary competition, supplement, and counter-agent.

Re:A Million Monkeys (1)

ContractualObligatio (850987) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454444)

I agree, but that wasn't what the GP asked.

Any given socially-driven news site is highly likely to a partisan instance of groupthink. So when the question is asked why would I value a major outlet over a such a website, the answer is that because the major outlet's viewpoint is significantly more likely to be better informed and closer to the truth. I don't think this is elitism - there's a lot of funding, career development, professional reputation and so forth that makes this possible. The fact I believe the typical session musician is better than the typical busker doesn't mean there aren't some very talented amateur musicians.

I make this comment in the context of the approach taken here in the UK, where the BBC sets the standard. The US is a completely different, ratings different pile of excrement it often seems...

Re:A Million Monkeys (3, Insightful)

vertinox (846076) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453920)

The incredible inaccuracy of eye witness accounts is well known. It is also a truism that the camera lies; a singe perspective can be dangerous. Grammar has nothing to do with it. Being objective does not mean elitism.

True objectivism would review all sources and not just trusted or professional ones. Simply dismissing eye witness accounts and photographic evidence because they could be wrong is not objective either.

Take the execution of Saddam Hussein. One could troll Youtube for countless uncensored versions of it, but on the nightly news, it played without sound and usually cut off right before they dropped him.

If you think people can't handle the whole part of the news, then perhaps that is where elitism comes into play. The problem with the current professional news in all mediums is that there is some type of spin on it with subtraction of context and addition of irrelevant language.

Of course, that could simply be a problem with the English language and I'd rather see facts and unedited media first hand than have someone decide what is important to me.

Re:A Million Monkeys (1)

ContractualObligatio (850987) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454622)

True objectivism would review all sources

True objectivity is not possible. That's why eyewitness accounts - known to be unreliable - are still valuable. I notice you've taken the exact opposite meaning out of my post. Even attempting to objective is clearly not one of your strong points.

If you think people can't handle the whole part of the news

You'll have to explain this one to me. How does pointing out the well known fact that eyewitness accounts are unreliable in any way suggestion that I'm talking some kind of second rate Jack Nicholson-style "you can't handle the truth" bullshit?

Psycho babble is always tricky territory, but it sounds like your projecting some issues here.

Re:A Million Monkeys (1)

thomasw_lrd (1203850) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454802)

Who said the news media was ever objective. Everybody is out to push his own agenda. Just look at the coverage Ron Paul gets.

Re:A Million Monkeys (1)

ContractualObligatio (850987) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454874)

I certainly didn't. So well done for pointing out the obvious.

Re:A Million Monkeys (4, Insightful)

cliffiecee (136220) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453680)

"Why are the highly-paid monkeys a thousand miles away, who are taking their lines from teleprompters more qualified than the monkey who was there? Because there might be grammar mistakes?"

Not because there might be grammar mistakes, but because there might be logic mistakes- incorrect assumptions, poor analogies, or fallacious reasoning. Which isn't to say that's exactly what we get with so-called liberal or conservative media; but at least they make an effort to appear balanced, and can (and should) be called on it when they don't make the effort. The man-on-the-street lacks that accountability.

Re:A Million Monkeys (2, Insightful)

CrazedWalrus (901897) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453822)

Amigo, you're calling me on what you consider a logic error, and I'm not a professional. It's the social aspect that makes this work. If the original commenter asserts something fallacious, he can be called on it. Contrast that with the news networks, who are deliberately misleading and well-paid to be so.

Re:A Million Monkeys (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22454490)

"but at least they make an effort to appear balanced"

I laugh when I see fair and balanced being used to describe the mainstream news media, after seeing how every single major news station treated Ron Paul.

Re:A Million Monkeys (1)

antiMStroll (664213) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454182)

You obviously haven't seen what most of the entries look like. Monkeys with video cams would be a step up.

Re:A Million Monkeys (1)

CrazedWalrus (901897) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454336)

True as that may be, at least the footage exists and has been shown. If we rely on a few organizations to take said footage, the quality might be better, but the money shot might be completely missing. What if there were 300 amateur video cameras at the JFK assassination? Would this bit be in Wikipedia? Maybe, maybe not, but the odds certainly increase for "maybe not".

President Johnson created the Warren Commission--chaired by Chief Justice Earl Warren--to investigate the assassination. It concluded that Oswald was the lone assassin, but this remains disputed by some scholars and eyewitnesses. Gallup Polls taken since the mid-1960s have consistently shown that approximately 80% of the American people did not believe the Commission's findings.[citation needed] Conspiracy theories about the assassination and supposed cover-up have been put forward and have become commonplace in popular culture.

Re:A Million Monkeys (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22454798)

You act as if it was a news organization that filmed the JFK assassination when it fact it was a lone private citizen with an 8mm camera. You're actually arguing against your point with this example.

Re:A Million Monkeys (1)

CrazedWalrus (901897) | more than 6 years ago | (#22455200)

Not at all. My point was that the increased number of videos might have helped. That there were very few is the problem. It doesn't matter who took it, it's the fact that there was very little footage from few vantage points.

Re:A Million Monkeys (1)

digitig (1056110) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454918)

Is the idea that a trained professional can do a better job than an amateur "elitism"? Do you think air traffic control should be done by trained experts or do you think that anybody with an internet connection should be able to grab a chunk of airspace and control the aircraft in it? Yes, there's a difference between safety-of-life applications and journalism, but it seems to me to be a difference of degree, not of principle. If nothing else, the employed professional can be fired (and maybe held to account by a professional body) if they screw up. Who holds the supplier of user-generated content to account?

Re:A Million Monkeys (3, Insightful)

CrazedWalrus (901897) | more than 6 years ago | (#22455322)

No. It's elitism when these guys have the power to greatly influence elections, decide when footage is something we "shouldn't see" (someone else mentioned the Hussein hanging), or otherwise decide which information they want the public to know or the perceptions they should have. There's a difference between doing a good job and abusing your pulpit.

Obviously a trained reporter can *report* better than an amateur, but there's not a lot of reporting going on nowadays. It's mostly "Hey, this happened. The next hour is my opinion and speculation presented as fact."

Air traffic control and news media are pretty different animals as well, so I'm not so sure your analogy flies, so to speak. Either way, if air traffic controllers spent 5% of their time controlling traffic and the other 95% arguing over whether Boeing or Airbus will win that big defense contract (or whatever), I'd say they weren't very good air traffic controllers either.

newsvine (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22453442)

This sounds fairly similar to Newsvine, [newsvine.com] a site that was launched a few years ago for the purpose of community-driven reporting. Since then, it has been acquired by MSNBC, and several of the more prominent submitters there have either been interviewed or actually done some reporting on MSNBC. Killfile, one of the members there was in or near Blacksburg, VA when the school shootings happened last year. Thanks to his contacts at the school, he was able to post up-to-the-minute reports of exactly what was going on, while the other news outlets were busy trying to get people down there (which takes several hours since it's an out-of-the-way hamlet). His professionalism in that and other instances have made him one of the biggest assets there. Oh yeah, and Newsvine also shares the ad revenue with its submitters, too. It's a great community.

One can only hope (5, Insightful)

CrazedWalrus (901897) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453452)

One can only hope that this is the future of news. News nowadays is nothing but pundits and propaganda. Individuals have their opinions too, but they're not professional spin machines. Any bias will probably be much more obvious to people with broken bullshit detectors. Good riddance to bad rubbish.

Depending on your political point of view, you might think I'm referring specifically to MSNBC, Fox, or CNN. Fact is, I'm talking about all of them.

Re:One can only hope (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22453510)

"News nowadays is nothing but pundits and propaganda. Individuals have their opinions too, but they're not professional spin machines."

Your estimation of every person in society is either very high or very naive.

Re:One can only hope (5, Insightful)

CrazedWalrus (901897) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453550)

There's a difference between an amateur stating or including their opinion and being a professional who spins for a living. The latter are much more practiced and much more convincing, to the point that many people accept O'Reilly's or Anderson Cooper's opinion as fact, most times without question. There's this implicit trust of the talking head in the suit that shouldn't exist. If news were created by obvious amateurs, perhaps more people would take it with a grain of salt.

Re:One can only hope (3, Insightful)

popmaker (570147) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453956)

Just like wikipedia. Out of the comparisons they have done of wikipedia vs. britannica, britannica has usually come out on top, having fewer errors in it. That is not surprising. It IS however surprising, that britannica HAD quite a lot of errors in it. There are more errors in wikipedia - but we KNOW that! I had never even thought that professional encyclopedias could be wrong, but of course they can be. Now I'm a little better at reading them since I always know of the possibility that what I am reading might be wrong, and that there is a reason to check a different source for comparison.

Re:One can only hope (1)

SkyDude (919251) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454384)

...to the point that many people accept O'Reilly's or Anderson Cooper's opinion as fact, most times without question.

Exactly how did you arrive at this conclusion? Are you one of those who think that because someone disagrees with your views they must be a programmed drone of Limbaugh, O'Reilly or Cooper? Or did you hear it from David Letterman, John Stewart or Steven Colbert?

Message to /. drones: stop being such elitists. You're not the only one with an education. Indeed, I might just hold the opinion that your education is flawed if you think this way.

Re:One can only hope (2, Insightful)

tarogue (84626) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453776)

News isn't supposed to be opinion. Network news, as opposed to cable news, is far more professional, usually (note the usually) including fact checking and background information. Cable news has already degraded to the point where Joe Blow can be as good as Wolf Blitzer. Cable news needs the story now, corrections can be thrown in later, after the public has already made up it's collective mind. That is actually one of the biggest problems with /.; the links to blogs, which then link to other blogs, which finally link to an actual report. I have a perspective and some opinions too, that doesn't make me a newsman.

Re:One can only hope (1)

CrazedWalrus (901897) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453794)

That's exactly my point. As long as the news is no better than Joe Blow, we may as well listen to Joe Blow. At least Joe isn't paid a million a year to advance an agenda.

It did some time ago. (3, Interesting)

Corf (145778) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453458)

Did you read Fark on September 11, 2001?

They were one of few sites with the bandwidth and the eyewitness accounts to accurately describe and present what was going on. I can wait a day or two for analysis -- when something big happens, I'll turn to somewhere like that for immediate presence. It's more annoying to separate the wheat from the chaff, but it's also an experience one doesn't get sitting in front of a TV or reading the sanitized version on the AP.

It will be just like professional news... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22453502)

...but with less 'S's.

Dear God in heaven... (2, Funny)

jollyreaper (513215) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453536)

Well, I suppose that's slightly less lame than having shows where pretty plastic anchorettes read us the blogs.

when pigs have wings ... (5, Insightful)

thebian (1218280) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453556)

When I can a.) call the White House and get a serious answer to a serious question, and b.) when I have a substantial amount of your trust that I'm telling you the truth, then I can do what big media does.

Without those, my story about the alien spacecraft in my backyard is equal to my story about the White House press conference.

Re:when pigs have wings ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22453694)

a.) call the White House and get a serious answer to a serious question

Big media might get a serious answer, but it very rarely seems to answer the question asked.

Re:when pigs have wings ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22453790)

a.) The "professional" journalists usually can't get a serious, straightforward answer from the White House or government officials at large either.
b.) I don't trust TV journalists any more than amateurs stating opinions in home videos, and neither should you. Just because they have a degree doesn't make them trustworthy. Like someone a few posts above mentioned, they're just better at spinning the story to make it sound credible, whether it's true or not. Regardless of the person doing the talking, I make my decision to believe that person based upon the supporting evidence presented. If there is no evidence (video or otherwise), they might as well be doing a story about that alien spacecraft in your backyard...

Re:when pigs have wings ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22453972)

"When I can a.) call the White House and get a serious answer to a serious question, and b.) when I have a substantial amount of your trust that I'm telling you the truth, then I can do what big media does."

That has to be a joke.

a: When has the White House given an honest answer? Sure, they're all 'serious', but mostly serious spin. AKA lies, obfuscation, diversions.

b: What makes you think people trust the big news media? They ALL have their own agenda, which can be boiled down to: Keep the eyeballs glued to the TV set, because we get paid per eyeball. EVERYTHING they do is filtered thru this advertiser-supported smoky glass.

Re:when pigs have wings ... (3, Interesting)

Sleepy (4551) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454300)

By your criteria, the mainstream press fails just as badly.

>When I can a.) call the White House and get a serious answer to a serious question

Are you SERIOUS? Can you not remember ANY of the press coverage post-911, when the PRESS was as guilty as the White House in drumming up The War?

Remember, this ALSO came at a time when 2 of the 3 major networks are subsidiaries OF military industrial complex corporations.

To keep pressure on the fourth network, Fox... oh wait, no pressure was needed.

Oh yeah, to keep pressure on the third network (Disney), the FCC was looking to "relax ownership limits" on broadcast TV (which leads to greater concentration in one network but the real value is the individual local channels become inflated, can actually have buyers)

The press wasn't misled... they dodged some very serious issues and questions. After all, they have an obligation to serve the stockholders (funds mostly, and funds could see the spending spree written on the wall)

Re:when pigs have wings ... (1)

UrinalPooper (1240522) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454594)

You must be watching press conferences from a different white house if you think the serious questions are getting serious answers...

Prelude to the Future (3, Interesting)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453564)

The future of news is when we've got clickable video with overlays of commentary from people among our social networks, and from people selected by weightings from our social networks. Centralized TV news "anchors" will be replaced by pros who are the most popular, who we subscribe to.

The "open news content" will come first, but it will suck until our social networks make our filter as easy as flipping to "Cronkite" used to be.

Re:Prelude to the Future (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22454078)

*whipcrack* *snaps a wet noodle* Back to your basement or it gets the wet noodle! I'm tired of hearing about social networks on the web, they are already showing signs of receding in importance and becoming a mainstay of the net rather some revolution in the news. Just a new news source, not the second the coming of the internet messiah.

Re:Prelude to the Future Newswire.pro (1)

FromTheAir (938543) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454220)

I agree this was outlined in May 2005 on http://www.newswire.pro/ [newswire.pro]

Subscriber based intelligence will be the future not advertiser supported news which is biased and maintains the popular fictions and storyline.

Adam Curtis on the demise of TV journalism (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22453586)

Not What I Want (3, Insightful)

reallocate (142797) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453614)

>>"unfiltered and unedited content..."

Sounds like Slashdot. Just what I don't want. "Unfiltered and unedited" means writers' mistakes, biases and lies slip through because there's no one in the loop to catch and eliminate them, and the readers won't either. Result: more jabber, less news.

Re:Not What I Want (1)

CrazedWalrus (901897) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453970)

No one in the loop to catch them? Do you read the /. comments? Readers regularly point out bad summaries, dupes, outright lies, and argue both sides of the story. That's the power of user-driven content. Not only does it not go unchallenged, it is posted with the expectation that it will be challenged by everyone in the world. When was the last time CNN let you publicly and instantly comment on the air about their TV broadcast?

Re:Not What I Want (1)

reallocate (142797) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454038)

Why should I think someone who says an earlier post is a lie is any more credible than I do the original poster?

I don't know about you, but I decide the credibility of any single source -- CNN or a Slashdot commenter -- by spending a lot of time with that source and seeing how it measures up against everything else I read.

Re:Not What I Want (2, Insightful)

CrazedWalrus (901897) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454104)

As a regular Slashdot reader, I've gotten pretty good at picking out asshats, trolls, and people who have no idea what they're talking about. The advantage here is that you have someone suggesting to you that X might not be true, and, if their opinion is worth considering, will make an attempt at backing up the assertion. You then have something to go on to do your own research. With regular news outlets, you have little opportunity for someone to suggest that an aspect of the story is flawed.

You don't need to believe the poster, but at least be open-minded enough to consider it. If it's important to you, go check what they're saying. If it's not, then who cares whether you believe them or not?

Re:Not What I Want (1)

reallocate (142797) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454180)

>> "With regular news outlets, you have little opportunity for someone to suggest that an aspect of the story is flawed."

I'm the one who does that.

I just think the search for a single perfect news source is silly and a waste of time. I also think there is no more reason to expect a "flat" bunch of anonymous "users" to be any better at producing news than a "hierarchy" of professionals. The process you say you use here at /. is exactly the same process sensible people have always applied to gathering their news: read a lot of different sources and understand the motivations and track records of the people making the news.

Re:Not What I Want (1)

CrazedWalrus (901897) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454238)

The difference is the knowledge base and they number of eyes. You don't personally know everything about everything. If someone more knowledgeable on the topic comes along and points out that something is BS, they've now flagged something you might not have noticed. You can then go find out more for yourself.

Re:Not What I Want (1)

reallocate (142797) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454292)

>>"If someone more knowledgeable on the topic comes along and points out that something is BS... "

But there is no way to know who among all the /. commenters is credible on any given topic. Besides, knowledge about a subject is not necessarily a prerequisite for creating a credible and accurate news story. Would you trust a story about Microsoft that was bylined by Bill Gates? No. What you need to create a credible news story, among other attributes, is an ability to recognize your own biases and limitations and filter them out. Most people do that imperfectly, which is why editors were created.

Re:Not What I Want (2, Interesting)

CrazedWalrus (901897) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454478)

Again, the key here is, if it's important to you, do your own checking. If it's not, forget it and move on. The fact that lots of people are available to call BS actually *increases* the credibility of the article written by Bill Gates if the only people calling BS are obvious wackos. If someone provides a reasoned argument, it's up to you to investigate the truth of that argument as much as it is up to you to investigate Gates' article itself. The value is in the possibility of presenting the opposing viewpoint. As you've pointed out, you should not, ever, believe everything you read, but you shouldn't automatically discount the opinions of the general public either.

Editors are an artifact of the, for lack of a better term, "non-interactiveness" of traditional media. They are supposed to act as the filter on behalf of the general public, but, as it turns out, editors have their own opinions and world views. Only by allowing the general public to comment on the news will all sides be expressed. You'll have mouth-breathers from the Republican, Democratic, Libertarian, Communist, Socialist, Green, and Martian parties all jumping in, and that will give you a much better feel for the different perspectives on the issue. You remain free to form your own opinion.

The fact is that the age of unbiased news is very likely gone forever. The only other method is to take all the bias and try to come up with a reasonable approximation of the truth. Editors are not on your side any more than Bill O'Reilly is.

Re:Not What I Want (1)

reallocate (142797) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454616)

How do you know someone is an "obvious wacko"" How do you know someone has presented a "reasoned argument"? However you make that determination on /., it is exactly the same method you use anywhere else, with any source.

When a commenter points out what he alleges to be a mistake or a bias in an article, that is precisely the same editorial function performed in a more "hierarchical" structure. (It's worth noting that /. is also hierarchical in that a very few people determine the stories that are published. That's a traditional editorial function.)

I don't need to rely on some anonymous person to tell me a story might be wrong or biases. I assume that going in.

I don't expect editors to be on my side. I think that's pretty much an irrelevancy. Nor do I equate "news" with "truth". News is reporting, i.e. an attempt to accurately produce a snapshot of a specific event. As such, I don't see that opening the news-creating arena to people with a myriad of opinions does me any good. The opinions of the general public - including mine -- on the news are just that, opinions. They are not the news.

Re:Not What I Want (1)

reallocate (142797) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454728)

To add to this, I don't "trust" traditional or hierarchical reporters or editors any more that I trust "user-generated" news. But, I do think it is much more difficult to determine the credibility of any single "user" because I will never be exposed to their writing in the depth or at the length I'm exposed to traditional news writing. E.g., I can read the NYT every day, and form an assessment of that paper based on that exposure. I'm never going to be able to form an equivalent assessment of some anonymous "user".

("Trust", I think, is not what I'm looking for from news creators. Credibility comes closer.)

Re:Not What I Want (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22454040)

Sounds like Slashdot. Just what I don't want. "Unfiltered and unedited" means writers' mistakes, biases and lies slip through because there's no one in the hierarchy to catch and replace them, and the readers won't either. Result: more jabber, less propaganda.

There, I think that's properly edited.

Re:Not What I Want (1)

acedotcom (998378) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454048)

Have you WATCHED fox news?

Re:Not What I Want (0, Flamebait)

reallocate (142797) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454124)

Sure, I've watched Fox News. Do I watch it? No, it's a right-wing propaganda tool. I'd only watch it if I wanted the right-wing spin on something.

Re:Not What I Want (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22454212)

"Unfiltered and unedited" means writers' mistakes, biases and lies
"Bark Osama said during a fundraiser today, 'I'll fuck this country up worse than my Black Muslim Daddy fucked my White Hoochie Momma!' The Senator refused our request for clarification."

Yes (2, Interesting)

hoshino (790390) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453662)

I think it's already happening.

This doesn't mean that news will become inaccurate or drop in quality. People will still want to read edited content produced by intelligent writers and those who provide them will naturally gain prominence and credibility. It's a rather nice change from the past where credibility depends on how much money you have to produce and distribute the content.

Of course, I'm only talking about corporate publications vs. blogs. TV newscast still has requires some infrastructure to support it. That said, I think getting news from linear broadcasting with fixed time slots is silly in the first place, so I don't see why we should create an online replacement for it.

Re:Yes (2)

Lewrker (749844) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453720)

You are talking about the world where tabloids sell more copies than all of the broadsheet journals together. People want the shiniest and the loudest, not edited and professional.

Lets clairify.... (2, Insightful)

3seas (184403) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453672)

Traditional news media which is based on popularity draw and teh use of reporter dirty tricks to bias and make an ant hill sound like a mountain....

vs.

user reporting that even slashdot has proven to be closer to the truth.

Entertainment value or information value?

Re:Lets clairify.... (0, Troll)

schnell (163007) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454280)

user reporting that even slashdot has proven to be closer to the truth

Closer to the truth only in small and selective ways ... the rest of the time, Slashdot's standards of "journalism" are pathetic to the point of irresponsibility. Slashdot seems "truthier" to you because you can evaluate the content effectively, but most of the "news" in the world is outside of your personal areas of expertise where it is 100% essential to have a trusted professional organization to deliver the news (that big, awful "mainstream media" everyone loves to complain about). And remember, I'm talking about news - AP or UPI reports of actual things happening, not some morons on Fox News or whatever blathering about politics.

You personally may derive more use from Slashdot because it's mainly tech stories and you are an intelligent consumer of technology-related information who can sort through the crap, but for the majority of news subjects, the Slashdot approach is utterly disastrous. For example:

  • Case 1: It's a story about shooting down a satellite. The Associated Press writes a story which is more general and may even leave out some key technical points or introduce technical inaccuracies. The Slashdot commentaries on the story, however, include a more correct summarization and interesting details. (The Slashdot comments also include reams of trolls, pseudoscience bullsh*tters and raving political loonies. You, the intelligent technical reader, can general sift for yourself which user-generated technology content sounds plausible vs. which are trolls or cranks.
  • Case 2: It's a story about Pakistan's economy. The actual story itself comes from some jackass blogger who made the whole thing up. The Slashdot editor posted the summary without reading the actual story, which proves to be inaccurate. You the reader do not have enough first-hand knowledge or experience to effectively filter the information, so you walk away from the experience with (at best) no idea what to believe, or (at worst) believing something completely wrong.

The point is that the "Slashdot model" only works in limited areas where the community can sift through the crap themselves. It can never work for all stories in all areas, which is what that awful mainstream media provides a (mainly) trusted voice for.

Citizen journalists can not cover real news issues (5, Insightful)

Morris Thorpe (762715) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453744)

The examples of citizen journalism cited (9/11, a bridge collapse) are about eyewitness accounts. Taking a picture of an event you happen to stumble into is hardly journalism.
When it comes to real in-depth news reporting, i-reporting can never, never replace professional news outlets. Solid reporting requires time, know-how, resources and money.

For example, the biggest story of the day is Kosovo declaring independence from Serbia. Tell me how that story can be researched, shot and written and presented by the average person. And for free? Yes, they can get reaction to the story. But putting it in context is entirely different.

There is much bias, sensationalism and broadcast "journalists" who are no more than pretty faces or loudmouth know-it-alls. Still, there are many real reporters out there doing real reporting. We will always need them.

Re:Citizen journalists can not cover real news iss (4, Insightful)

Esc7 (996317) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454712)

Hear hear!

What news requires is synthesis, taking information from all around the world, creating context, and informing people of what it all means. User generated news will never be able to compete with someone who is paid to investigate, understand and report professionally.

Unfortunately modern American news (from what I've seen) has completely dropped true synthesis in fear of bias. The false dichotomy of that there are 2 sides to every issue, even factual ones, is what makes news into simple parroting of press releases and dry facts, pushing all synthesis to the realm of punditry, which has no credibility whatsoever.

So while user-generated news is probably rising, and traditional news outlets are probably hurting in a big way lately, I think it's all because the news lost its spine and won't concentrate on what makes news great. A new organization will probably rise over CNN, Fox, MSNBC.....but the AP won't die.

Crowdsourcing (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22453758)

Good or bad? I don't know, but this practice has a name. Use it.

Its only part of it. (1)

esconsult1 (203878) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453788)

News can do well to be published everyday people like us. We break stories and comment on stuff that's happening out there that ordinary reporters tend to miss. However, many reporters are great writers, that give you the background to the story, as well as what's new happening. And reporters who are also good writers tend to make it easy and a pleasure to read.

BREAKING NEWS Ketchup... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22453796)

The most read news article on that website was "BREAKING NEWS Ketchup... killed by mustard". I this the future of news?

Fallacy in the summary (3, Insightful)

stormguard2099 (1177733) | more than 6 years ago | (#22453812)

The summary pushes the idea that there is only room for one dominant news system. Why? I think that we could benefit from a healthy mixture of news sources and journalism styles. Both systems have their strengths and weaknesses and when someone takes information from both they get a better rounded idea of what actually happened and how to intrepret it.

Commenting (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22453984)

I don't know about you, but the thing that bothers me the most is that most news websites allow users to comment and share their opinion with the world. Is reading comments from Roxxorcom23 really news? no, it's annoying and comment sections should be removed from news websites.

Re:Commenting (2, Insightful)

CrazedWalrus (901897) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454056)

Granted, comment sections on news sites don't normally tend to draw the high-brow crowds, but when a topic is of great interest, it will draw better comments. This is especially important if the news story itself contains major bias, misinformation, or missing information. Unfortunately, I've seen comment sections where people said "It seems like my earlier post was removed, but...". Censorship of the comments completely defeats the purpose.

Besides, they're usually at the bottom of the page, and are easy to ignore. If you don't like them, you are not required to read them.

Re:Commenting (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454202)

no, it's annoying and comment sections should be removed from news websites.

This is a news site. Why don't you remove yourself, as an example to the rest of us?

I hope not (3, Insightful)

Animats (122034) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454002)

I hope this isn't the future of news.

The number of real news reporters keeps dropping. Most stories today, other than those that involve some act of violence or a disaster, originated as a press release or staged media event. Very few reporters are out there digging. Digging takes time and money.

Re:I hope not (1)

djlosch (556330) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454098)

Agreed. The vast majority of crap that ends up on digg/netscape/reddit is either blogspam or some blog that re-stated another article without citing its source. The amount of intentional duping and copying is ridiculous. Of course, you can't copyright facts, and all the videos are on youtube, so I don't see the situation getting better.

And then you have the crap that's simply not newsworthy... like the video on the front page of ireport right now that has a ketchup bottle arguing with a mustard container over which is better.

The future is pluriform and independent (1)

Eukariote (881204) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454110)

People are getting wise and no longer expect corporate/government news sources to provide them with anything close to the truth. More and more, they are turning to various independent Internet news sources, and make up their own minds about what is credible, and what is not.

News sources such as these: http://www.whatreallyhappened.com/ [whatreallyhappened.com] http://www.opednews.com/ [opednews.com] http://www.electricpolitics.com/ [electricpolitics.com] http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/ [informatio...house.info]

Re:The future is pluriform and independent (1)

nbauman (624611) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454360)

People are getting wise and no longer expect corporate/government news sources to provide them with anything close to the truth. More and more, they are turning to various independent Internet news sources, and make up their own minds about what is credible, and what is not.

News sources such as these: http://www.whatreallyhappened.com/ [whatreallyhappened.com]

You mean like, "First Hour: Allan Favish in the murder of Vince Foster"?

I give up. You've found a news source less reliable than Judy Miller.

Re:The future is pluriform and independent (1)

Eukariote (881204) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454690)

I give up. You've found a news source less reliable than Judy Miller.

Don't give up buddy. Strive for an open mind. You picked out one detail, pronounce a verdict based on a preconception, then generalize to the conclusion that the whole source is unreliable. Why not try for a while what I suggest: turn to independent news sources and carefully make up your own mind. Pretty soon, you will find out that http://www.whatreallyhappened.com/ [whatreallyhappened.com] is a rather more reliable news source than anything the corporate media have on offer.

Ask yourself, where did I get my preconception from? It was a story in some corporate news outlet, was it not?

Great idea! (1)

urcreepyneighbor (1171755) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454120)

You work, I get paid! Fan-fucking-tastic!

I'd normally add a "zing!" to the end of this post to make it clear it's supposed to be funny, but since this model is actually being exploited... well, it's not funny... just sad.

Fox (save the bashing, it only makes you seem like a brainwashed, meme-spewing twit) is doing the same thing, too. They call it (IIRC) "uReport". So, CNN isn't alone in this.

Here's the deal: if a news outlet wants to profit from your work, demand credit and/or a slice of the pie. Give the bastards nothing for free. Even if Ainsley Earhardt [foxnews.com] or Molly Henneberg [foxnews.com] asks real nice, be firm! ;)

Newswire.pro way ahead of the game predicting (1)

FromTheAir (938543) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454122)

http://www.newswire.pro/ [newswire.pro] was launched in May 2005 and has some really interesting stories "Popular News Ignored By The General Media" it states which I take to mean not the status quo perspective

However some think it is really a memetic engineering project to transform the news industry itself. If you read the content about newswire.pro you would see why, it was desinged to put the ideas in our heads, and guess what what they said is happening.

News Wire.Pro subscriber based transformational news and intelligence streaming for the discerning mind where intelligence gathering professionals and independent citizens interface to infuse the Mind @ Large with News: Event knowledge with complimentary intelligence, insight, commentary, and wisdom.

Same Views - Different Sources (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22454130)

Just because a network is willing to review news items from any individual that cares to submit them it doesn't mean that the item is necessarily going to be accepted for broadcast. Networks don't even accept all the pieces from their own journalists, citing time constraints, priority for high-interest items, breaking news, etc. A network will skew their choices of independant submissions as they have always done with journalists - using the same biases and slants they apply now to their professional reporters. What this new approach does is build credibility for the political and social points of view that the network knows are safe and that it wants to promote. The networks' cowardace and self-censorship over broadcasting unpopular information won't be any less with amateur pieces than it is now with professional submissions. The "best of them for all to see" will be the ones that won't cause any backlash to the network from information that their viewers don't want to see. Broadcasting a piece from an amateur creates the impression that "this is what real people know" and reinforces the common knowledge. If you want "unfiltered and unedited content", video has been available on the internet from independant idividuals for some time now, and your as free to watch one clip as you are another without waiting for the cable or satellite sludge pump to send it to you.

Footage (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22454132)

"Analysts point to the amateur footage from the Virginia Tech shootings and the Minnesota bridge collapse as an example of the capabilities of distributed reporting"

Yes, but those in possession of that footage sold it for some serious cash. It wasn't posted to a free news site. My point here is that if someone has something valuable to say or show, then its worth payment. If you run a site and expect people to contribute for free, then you are seriously underestimating the competition for news information.

Not as easy as it looks (4, Interesting)

nbauman (624611) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454196)

As a journalist I'm not worried that citizen journalists will do my job better than me any time soon (although I wish they would, because it would be better for the world).

When I first started writing news, for alternative newspapers, I thought it was easy. I knew who the good guys were, and who the bad guys were, and all I had to do was expose them. Just try it. If only it were that easy.

The most important lesson I learned as a real journalist, as distinct from a hippie journalist, is that whenever you attack the bastards, always call them up and give them a chance to respond. Let them defend themselves, and then show how they're lying. Just try it. Every real journalist (Molly Ivins, for one) will tell you all the times they thought they had the guy nailed, but when they called him up, it turned the story completely around.

There was a story on This American Life http://www.thislife.org/ [thislife.org] about a kid who was in Europe, and talked his way into a press conference with George H.W. Bush (the father, not the stupid one). Good work so far. Then he got a chance to ask the President of the United States a question on the environment. Bush said that he supported nuclear power because it would do, overall, less harm to the environment. He actually made some good points.

The kid hadn't done his homework. He didn't know how to frame a good question that would pin the bastard down, and he didn't know how to follow it up. He didn't know shit about the environment. Bush had probably answered the same question a dozen times before, knew more about the environment than the kid did, and knew how to give a good answer. TAL played a tape of the press conference, and it was painful for me to listen, because I'd been in that same situation so many times before. (If you want to become a citizen journalist, you can practice getting prepared by looking up that story on the TAL web site. This will give you an idea of how hard it is to do research.)

Look at what I think is one of the best news sources in English: Democracy Now http://www.democracynow.org/ [democracynow.org] Take a look at this: http://www.democracynow.org/2008/1/28/the_democrats_suharto_bill_clinton_richard [democracynow.org] There is no way that any citizen journalist is going to be able to question Richard Holbrooke or Bill Clinton about human rights the way Alan Nairn and Amy Goodman did. Or this http://www.democracynow.org/features [democracynow.org] They know their facts thorougly.

Who do you want grilling your so-called elected leaders -- Amy Goodman, or some well-intentioned "activist" who doesn't know his facts (like those ringers they have in the audience during the presidential debates)?

I'm not defending the White House press corps either. Sure, the average stoned activist could do a better job than Judy Miller, but that's a pretty low bar.

There is one case where citizen journalists can do a good job, and that's as first-hand eyewitnesses. I remember going to an anti-war demonstration during the '60s, and having the New York City police viciously attack non-violent demonstrators (including me), some of whom had brought their children, and put some of them in the hospital with permanent injuries, for no reason that I could see (or that the City's lawyers could come up with in subsequent lawsuits). Running for safety, I came across a bunch of guys with press badges, huddled safely away from the scene where they couldn't witness the police brutality. On WBAI-FM radio, we heard first-hand accounts of what happened on the scene, which was consistent with what I saw.

Next morning, I picked up the New York Times, and saw a complete propaganda job, quoting only the police and City officials, claiming that the demonstrators had started it, it was the demonstrators' fault, and the cops had behaved with proper restraint. The Times didn't bother to interview or quote any of the first-hand observers among the demonstrators (contrary to their own pronouncements that their job is to get all sides of the story).

So I'm under no illusions about professional journalists or the establishment press.

You want to be a citizen journalist? Fine. I love competition. I challenge you to get a good story. The only thing matters in journalism is whether you can get information that's important to your readers. If you do that, however you do that, you're as good as me. But in my experience, it takes a lot of work, and I spent a lot of time making mistakes before I learned how to get it right. Most of the people I see even on the major media still don't get it right. I bet that one out of 100 citizen journalists will do a good job (maybe better than me), and I welcome them to take over.

time and karma (1)

e**(i pi)-1 (462311) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454204)

User generated news stories enrich the field of journalism, it does not replace traditional journalism. It has been stated before, but there are in general differences between amateurs and professionals, partly due to amount of time available to research and partly due to reputation. The reputation ("Karma" ...) is an important point. Examples
  • I pay attention to article by Rich in the NYT not only because it is well written and documented, but also because for a long time already, articles have proven to be accurate and reliable, also after years.
  • I don't pay attention to an article of Dvorak on technology mainly because experience has shown that the predictions were wrong.
Reputation is difficult to gain as "user" or "reader" and therefore, user generated news will always have to be valued less. But it is valuable: for reflecting and discussing news it is good to have access to blogs or discussion forums like slashdot. For finding interesting news, sites like digg are useful. News media already tap the potential today, when readers can contribute video or pictures from cell phones.

Still journalism is a serious profession which needs to be learned and earned. It involves researching a subject in depth, looking at it from many angles and comparing many sources. If a subject is more complex, a journalist has to consult with specialists and have contacts with insiders. It needs time to write a good article and it needs time to gain the reputation.

I sure hope not. (1)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454408)

The top story there is now:

BREAKING NEWS Ketchup
Victorville, California


ZOMG mustard wanted for questioning

Tags: mideast, ketchup

I rest my case...

Gargoyles (1, Insightful)

Aeonite (263338) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454442)

It's a gargoyle, standing in the dimness next to a shanty. Just in case
he's not already conspicuous enough, he's wearing a suit. Hiro starts
walking toward him.

          Gargoyles represent the embarrassing side of the Central Intelligence
Corporation. Instead of using laptops, they wear their computers on their
bodies, broken up into separate modules that hang on the waist, on the back,
on the headset. They serve as human surveillance devices, recording
everything that happens around them. Nothing looks stupider; these getups
are the modern-day equivalent of the slide-rule scabbard or the calculator
pouch on the belt, marking the user as belonging to a class that is at once
above and far below human society. They are a boon to Hiro because they
embody the worst stereotype of the CIC stringer. They draw all of the
attention. The payoff for this self-imposed ostracism is that you can be in
the Metaverse all the time, and gather intelligence all the time.

          The CIC brass can't stand these guys because they upload staggering
quantities of useless information to the database, on the off chance that
some of it will eventually be useful. It's like writing down the license
number of every car you see on your way to work each morning, just in case
one of them will be involved in a hit-and-run accident. Even the CIC
database can only hold so much garbage. So, usually, these habitual
gargoyles get kicked out of the CIC before too long.

          This guy hasn't been kicked out yet. And to judge from the quality of
his equipment - which is very expensive - he's been at it for a while. So he
must be pretty good.

That video clip on our Google future? (1)

KlaymenDK (713149) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454748)

Where's that video clip about Google buying all the news sources, becoming not just the purveyor but the *creator* of all news?

I'm not talking about the "Google Master Plan" video, but another clip that's a few years old by now. Anyone?

If iReport.com is the future, God help us (1)

John Jorsett (171560) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454846)

Just took a look at iReport.com and saw the following in the "most viewed" category:
BREAKING NEWS: Ketchup
Yuck! The weather here in New York is absolutely *disgusting*
Thursday Lunch Report: Omelete!
Marcus Harun's Situation Room. [Book report done in CNN Situation Room style]
Image. My village pictures

Has it's place - but NOT news (1)

DrBuzzo (913503) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454888)

If they are selling this as "news" then that is a problem. User generated information and exchanges are fine. If people want to talk about what they see in the world or report things around them that's fine and it has it's place. Communities online and webblogs and forums are a great way to allow open exchange between citizens.

But it can be very dangerous to mistake online banter for serious news reports. If a news agency wants to use citizens as eyewitness sources fine, but they have to verify and investigate what is being claimed. If there is going to be a decent to "Some guy who says he is in Oklahoma says that he saw a flying saucer and in other news PartyDude69 has reported that Iraqi forces are rockin it bigtime in the south of Iraq. Other reports from SexililChic420 have stated that China needs to stop being so stupid and making yucky smoke - raising questions about the effectiveness of the Kyoto protocol."

Personally, I avoid news agencies which seem to lack basic credibility. Hopefully enough people will do this to actually get their attention. But... I doubt it.

The Cult of the Amature by Keen (1)

ducomputergeek (595742) | more than 6 years ago | (#22454894)

This is sounding more and more like what he said would happen in his book. It's an interesting read.

The Real News (1)

MrSteveSD (801820) | more than 6 years ago | (#22455098)

The Real News [therealnews.com] might be a glimpse of the future. It carries no advertising and works on a donation basis. Mainstream media outlets really just act as a megaphone for governments and big business. For anyone who is interested in the way news is reported, I would strongly recommend you watch Manufacturing Consent [youtube.com] on Youtube (there's a book too).
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