Publication;SocialActivism.gr of Athens
Edited by Katerina Nakou
«Όλες οι υποκειμενικότητες συνθέτουν μια αντικειμενικότητα»
“All the subjectivities consist an objectivity”
The concept of citizen journalism (also known as “public”, “participatory”, “democratic”, “guerrilla” or “street” journalism) is based upon public citizens “playing an active role in the process of collecting, reporting, analyzing, and disseminating news and information.” Citizen journalism should not be confused with community journalism or civic journalism, both of which are practiced by professional journalists. Collaborative journalism is also a separate concept and is the practice of professional and non-professional journalists working together. Citizen journalism is a specific form of both citizen media and user generated content.
New media technology, such as social networking and media-sharing websites, in addition to the increasing prevalence of cellular phones, have made citizen journalism more accessible to people worldwide. Due to the availability of technology, citizens can often report breaking news more quickly than traditional media reporters.
An active citizen, using a pen or keyboard, a microphone or camera, “produces content”, a range of products of which a large amount is accessible for free. He must, in addition, encourage, enrich and verify the interactive flow of information and opinions of the Internet users.
It is possible that in the future, the use of editing tools and the ability to coordinate a public television debate will weigh more in terms in-depth knowledge of certain sectors than investigative journalism. Many managers are already making a call for journalists to contribute to the web version with their own soundtrack, video or proprietary information given a little reward for their services or even unpaid.
Although such an application appears sustainable for the Internet, traditional media creates unprecedented restrictions. First, there is the risk of conflict between “journalists-orchestras” who play the new technologies on their fingers, and (rarely) professionals who have more experience in actual research and in the verification of facts rather than the manipulation of digital data.
Undoubtedly, the digital conversion is necessary for the survival of traditional media. But, as in traditional journalism, the effort to attract the maximum possible audience has its multiple implications.
The reason is simple: information sites are usually afraid of losing the ratings if they do not adopt the «buzz»  and, as a result, they are engaged in the commercialization of news. In this way, the formula becomes a driver of “publicity” policy, a trend which is simultaneously denounced.