BLOG08: The crowd interviews and the endless debate of journalism versus blogging

Hugh McLeod, Loren Feldman, Pete Cashmore and Elisabeth Winkler from the audience got on stage to answer questions from the audience and the live backchannel (Twitter).


The first question from Rick Slagter is whether “blogging is the rescue of slow journalism.”

Loren Feldman is very explicit about comparing bloggers to journalists: “Bloggers aren’t journalists. You’re just a bunch of guys sitting in your livingroom, writing things.” Pete Cashmore comes to the defense of bloggers when he jokes that “Sometimes we dress up and we wear pajamas.” Cashmore describes the current media landscape as an ecosystem where bloggers and journalists compliment each other.

Winkler sees the overlap between journalism and blogging in the connections between opinion and fact. However, a fact needs a context because everyone has an agenda and the major media aren’t very clear about their agenda. She sees blogging as a little more transparent.

Cashmore compares the discussion to the endless discussion that is still going on surrounding the term “web2.0” We spend a lot of time and posts on trying to define it which lead to endless discussion. The whole journalism versus bloggers debate depends on how you define journalism. Paul Bradshow from the Online Journalism Blog enters the debate by rightfully stating that the “is blogging journalism?” is an old question and that we need more challenging questions.

The best part of the discussion seems to be happening on Twitter where Wilbert Baan (Interaction Designer of the Volkskrant newspaper website) replies to Paul Bradshaw’s statement with an insightful comment:

I think the distinction between the medium and practice of blogging is an important one, especially in relation to journalism.

14 thoughts on “BLOG08: The crowd interviews and the endless debate of journalism versus blogging

  1. Pingback: Anne Helmond
  2. Thank you, Anne, for such a clear account. As a journalist, I am not used to being quoted. Now the shoe is on the other foot, I doubly appreciate your accuracy. One thing to add: I commented from the floor that all the speakers bar one were male; was invited there and then to join the panel hence making my impromptu appearance on stage. Which goes to show – true to the spirit of blogging – that it’s good to express yourself, you don’t know who is listening or where it will lead.

  3. I guess the debate is never ending because people have varying definitions for blogging and journalism.

    I write both news stories and blogs for Greenpeace. The former comes from my head – the latter from my heart and for me that is the main distinction between the two.

  4. @Elisabeth Winkler: Thank you for your kind response. I thought it was great that you stepped up and joined the panel on stage. Blogging has also lead me to places I thought I would never go because you indeed never know who’s reading your blog.

    @Lisa Vickers: I think that is a very useful personal distinction especially when it is work related content. I can imagine writing for Greenpeace indeed requires two different perspectives on the matter.

  5. And just to add – I have been a journalist for over 20 years – and a blogger for nearly a year.
    Blogging gives me a freedom to speak my mind and to choose my agenda. In journalism you are always fitting in with a format. I am also a magazine editor, and I am often saying ‘no’ to people’s ideas – because they do not fit with the issue or whatever. However in blogging, no one is saying ‘no’ to me! This a precious freedom indeed.

  6. I use my blog in pretty much the same way as an ‘academic.’ There are no peer reviewers delaying my publishing and I don’t need to fit into a format and there is more constructive feedback. That’s exactly what I want.

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