With the ascension of citizen journalism, one of the main questions that have been discussed is the existence of a conflict between citizen journalism and professional journalism.
In opposition to traditional media, where the audience are mere passive receptors of the news and opinions behind business interests of media houses, the citizen journalism makes possible common persons express their own opinions about facts and events relevant to their reality and according to their perspectives.
Consequently, these changes also put in evidence the necessity of the traditional media houses or professional journalism – to change the way they interact with their audience: to be more interactive, to focus on local news, to dialogue with readers, among other demands brought by the web 2.0.
So, instead of publish monologue news biased on media houses interests, the journalism is
facing today the challenge to put the readers as a part of the news, in a way in which they can see themselves as participants of the facts and events around them.
In one side, many untold stories have been receiving attention on last years throughout the
blogs and social media channels. And shared in a velocity and in a proportion never imagined using traditional media, news and stories normally ignored by mainstream press can be in evidence worldwide; without any possibility of control on information flow. And in the other side, it have been discussed about the vulnerability of citizen journalism to personal biases or to lack of professionalism by amateur journalists.
But the point is that both – citizen journalism and professional journalism – are complementary to each other. With many people using internet and smartphones, it’s so much easier and simple to share information, including news about a certain fact or event. Control on information, anymore! As citizen share in form of re-tweets, likes, Diggs, there’s no limit to contents’ richness.
So, the professional journalists have also to be open to adapt their work to these changes
on communication process. It’s possible (yes, it’s possible) to align citizen journalism and
professional journalism in the same space, but it’s also necessary to comprehend that citizens want to participate, to have their opinions taken up. And these require from media houses a new positioning on how to do journalism.