Dana Blankenhorn gets it right:
“To say a blog is journalism is like saying web pages are journalism. Journalism can happen on Web pages, and on blogs, in lots of places. Not everything that’s printed is journalism. Not everything that’s broadcast is journalism. Yet we have print and broadcast journalism. It’s the same with blogging software.”
Blankenhorn is on the same track as SJSU’s own Prof. Craig:
“Outside the legal arena, however, what’s silly about this is that the dimensions of the dispute — “Is blogging journalism or not?” — ignore a truth that’s obvious to those without an agenda. Declaring that blogs equal journalism is like saying that television equals journalism — people mistake the medium for the message.”
My answer? “Blog” is just a format, a good new useful one that delivers the potential communicative power of the Web to its users.
As a j-school student, shouldn’t I be going on and on about the journalistic implications of all this? Uh, it seems like that avenue is pretty wide already. You can find your own sources for that.
I also happen to be a Mass Communications student – so the potential of the blog format as a useful tool for human beings to interact and get to know each other better appeals to me.
As I quoted Chuck Olsen in an earlier post, “Blogs are people.” (FULL DISCLOSURE: Chuck actually said “Has anyone ever seen Soylent Green? Blogs are made of peeeeeeeeeeeeeeeopllllllllllllllle! Blogs are peeeeeeeeeeeoplllle!”)
Really. They are. And they’re an easy way for groups of people with similar interests and ideas to track what’s happening in the interest or idea of their choice. Personally, I read about journalism everyday, but I also keep a close eye on how technology is changing all communication, and I check a few blogs about how educators at all levels are using tech/blogs/computers in and out of the classroom.
And I might read about public relations, or renewable energy, or browse through a feed that’s bring me every blog post with “iraq elections”or “venezuela” in it. Why? Because these are things that interest me, and while there are obvious connections to both journalism and politics, that’s not all that’s there.
I can’t be an expert on everything I’m interested in, but reading other viewpoints about everything I’m interested in helps me define my own ideas.