Participatory Journalism keynote in Australia

August 1st, 2011 | News | Alfred Hermida | No Comments

Co-author Alfred Hermida delivered a keynote in July at the Screen Futures conference in Melbourne, Australia on the promise and practice of participatory journalism.

The talk was based on findings in Participatory Journalism: Guarding Open Gates at Online Newspapers  into how journalists are thinking about their relationship with the people formerly known as the audience.

Prof Hermida told the conference that journalists see the audience as “active recipients” of the news. Citizens are expected to act when news happens, by taking a photo or emailing in a news tip, and then react by commenting.

The crucial and central processes of deciding what news is and how to cover and present it remains almost entirely under the journalist’s control.

The way newsrooms have adopted participatory journalism continues to change and evolve as they try to meld a culture of openness and collaboration with an editorial model of hierarchy and control.

For the most part, so far, journalists have sought to find ways to maintain their professional status, rather than redefine what it means to be a journalist.

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