Blogging and Journalism
Blogging and Journalism are two related fields that compliment each other. Bloggers need journalists for info and journalists need bloggers for audience. The increased use of the Internet has resulted in an increase in the need to improve on content that relates to the readers and users of the Internet. This has led to the generation of different websites offering a variety of contents that appeals to different readers and users based on different demographic factors, such as age, gender, race, ethnicity, social status, and geographical location.
One of the mainstream media outlets that are quickly gaining momentum and a large fan base is the blogs. The freedoms provided by the growing unregulated Internet providers has resulted in a new generation of content providers that offer news and different stories that would appeal to the readers. These Internet content providers, called bloggers, can create their own websites, which they can use to upload information.
However, blogging has become too unregulated and widespread that it has begun infringing on the mainstream journalistic practices and code of ethics. Bloggers usually provide content that appeals to the readers and is inconsiderate of such pertinent issues as verification of source and quality of information that they publish on their websites. Additionally, journalism ethics dictate that a blogger should be attached to a news channel (such as print, radio, or television) since the latter ensures that information aired has been verified and is not derived from personal opinion.
Journalists usually undergo training and education that enrich their investigative skills and instill in them a need for following the code of ethics and standards for journalism. In contrast, bloggers merely begin their working careers writing without this form of training. Additionally, it is imperative that all journalists attain some form of educational achievement, such as a degree in journalism, mass communication or other relevant course. However, bloggers simply begin writing their stories without prior education in the pertinent fields, and are sometimes too young to comprehend the tenacity of the content of their blogs due to a lack of training, professional, and education experience. This means that bloggers have begun infringing on mainstream journalism and are tarnishing the code of ethics that all journalists uphold.
The content that is usually uploaded by bloggers is sometimes unethical, immoral, and lack concrete informational background. They seem to lack professionalism since some of the information does not even qualify as material that journalists would write. For instance, such stories with the headlines as “Cheating Prank Backfires When Girlfriend Reveals She’s Cheating Too” show a lack of education and experience in journalism since the latter is about social development, rather than social promiscuity, which the article seems to insinuate. The bloggers lack objectivity and are subjective when posting their views in their articles. Majority of bloggers also use personal opinion, rather than facts to write their articles, hence reducing the credibility of their work.
Majority of mainstream media do not usually use content from bloggers due to the above factors. Lack of attachment of the blogger to a recognized media entity means that the bloggers are not bound by any rules, laws of code of ethics. Therefore, the content posted by the bloggers could result in dire consequences if defamation is leveled on an innocent person. Myriads of lawsuits have been filed against bloggers due to their inexperienced and inaccurate relay of information to the public that has tarnished people’s names. Consequently, majority of the lawsuits result in the bloggers being fined heavily for their ineptness, though this situation is expected for as long as the Internet continues to be unregulated and free for all users.
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