It’s the start of a new academic year so I thought I’d compile a list of the latest reading I would recommend for any students looking at online journalism. (If you have suggestions for additions please let me know!):
Theoretical, historical and conceptual background
Digital Journalism by Jones & Lee (Sage, 2011) is very comprehensive and worth reading in full.
Gatewatching by Axel Bruns (Peter Lang, 2005) covers areas that tend to be overlooked by journalism books, such as new media methods and startups from outside traditional media. Read: Chapter 4: Making News Open Source
We The Media by Dan Gillmor (O’Reilly, 2006) is a seminal book on citizen journalism which is also available free online.
Practical online journalism – general
Clearly I’m going to say my own book, the Online Journalism Handbook(2011, Pearson), co-authored with Liisa Rohumaa, which covers blogging and web writing, data journalism, online audio and video, interactivity, community management and law. Continue reading →
Credentials or proof of any affiliation with any recognized news entity.
Proof of adherence to journalistic standards such as editing, fact-checking, or disclosures of conflicts of interest.
Keeping notes of conversations and interviews conducted.
Mutual understanding or agreement of confidentiality between the defendant and his/her sources.
Creation of an independent product rather than assembling writings and postings of others.
Contacting “the other side” to get both sides of a story.
This seems a reasonable enough list of criteria – I’m interpreting the phrasing of the judge’s opinion as indicating that any single of these criteria would suit, rather than all 7 (as is the case in the Reynolds defence mentioned by Thom).
But I think there’s a broader problem (unrelated to the specific case in Oregon, which was about a protection from being sued for libel only afforded to journalists) with trying to certify individuals as journalists when more journalism is done collaboratively. If, for example, one person researches the regulations relating to an issue, another FOIs key documents; a third speaks to a victim; a fourth speaks to an expert; a fifth to the person resposible; and a sixth writes it all up into a coherent narrative – which one is the journalist?