In one of the recent discussions on a prominent LinkedIn forum, some participants representing prestigious journalistic bodies were of the opinion that bloggers lack the expertise which is found in the journalists. They conveyed the impression that since journalists get trained at recognized school of journalism, they display a better critical sense, exhibit better style and react in more mature way. That makes them a greater and more respectable entity than a blogger. However, in my eyes, they missed an important aspect: Why should a blogger be interested in emerging as a good journalist?
It can be easily understood that rising importance of bloggers and their ever-increasing influence have unsettled their counterparts in journalistic circles. However, I am not interested in being at loggerheads with them. I am, at present, more interested in making bloggers aware of the fact that instead of aspiring to emerge as a good journalist, it’s time to acknowledge the uniqueness associated with blogging and how to use it well to do justice with critical issues.
The difference between them should exist even as both come to use similar method and approach while dealing with sensitive issues. The bloggers should not be coloured in the traits which has made journalism a profession instead of a mission! One cannot overlook the fact that journalists or editors having a developed critical sense often display biased approach while framing the perspective.
For instance, if one reads India related news items in reputed foreign magazines one would always notice prejudices of foreign correspondents. Still they boast of impartiality and transparency! The bloggers, more often than not, are free from external pressures to view the issue from a particular angle only. They are free to present the issue as it is. It’s another thing that being human they give way to prejudiced opinions.
I strongly dismiss the views which suggest that it’s necessary to be part of journalistic institution to emerge as a good writer or good journalist. The ability to write a perfect piece cannot be nurtured within journalistic institutions. A good news sense cannot be manufactured. In fact, it’s a recent trend to have a degree from journalistic institution. That’s one of the reasons why many journalistic institutions have come in origin in India, which are fooling the wannabe journalists.
Anyway, that’s not an attempt to ignore the role of good institutes but I am against any division based on this assumption that journalists are better since they have honed their skills at some institute. Bloggers, too, have their own share of unique experiences which cannot be overlooked only because they have not attended any journalistic institution!
Anyway, let the blogger set good precedents without the desire to emerge as a good journalist. After all, the bloggers have emerged as a better alternative to biased media. There is no need for them to copycat mannerism prevalent in the journalistic circles. The bloggers should aim to be better than journalists instead of being like them!