Well, it appears emergence of bloggers have really unsettled journalists and media groups. I say so because they love to indulge in snide insinuations about the bloggers, which speak volume about their insecurities. I had been part of journalistic fraternity and, therefore, know quite well about the type of work done inside newspaper office. I agree that journalists follow a refined work culture, which lays stress on “accuracy, a critical sense, balance “and divergent view-points. However, it’s really tough to understand how come presence of certain aspects in one circle leads to absence of same aspects in other circle following a different modus operandi? It really defies logic that while highlighting the good features of traditional media, it’s been assumed that media in its new avatara (emergence of blogosphere) lacks credibility and substance.
The truth is that bloggers have emerged as better alternative because traditional media betrayed the faith imposed on them by the readers. It’s now very clear that newspapers/electronic media take stand according to their political affiliations. Most news is now sponsored news. And that’s the reason why bloggers emerged on the surface. You cannot fool all the people all the time. Okay, the journalists are taking total care of language errors, factual accuracy and etc. but these are of little use if the end product is flawed one! I think none of the gentlemen participating in the debate came to throw light on the unholy nexus between journalists, politicians and business tycoons. True, great power is always in tandem with great responsibility and I am pretty sure that bloggers would learn all the tricks necessary to present news items in better way. In fact, they have already done some wonderful work. It’s now undeniable that citizens have finally found a medium to express views close to the reality. Or else, they were left at the mercy of big media brands who offered only half truths in name of truth!
Anyway, when I appreciate the good work done by the bloggers, I do not assume (like my friends in newspaper world) that everything is wrong about the traditional media and people associated with them. They have certainly set good precedents. But my main worry is that will the bloggers be able to keep themselves above the flaws found in traditional media landscape? Will they be able to use in fair way privileges enjoyed by them? Or will they become monkey with a razor blade? Let’s leave it on time. In the end, I must inform my friends that in many countries, including India, new IT laws have been introduced to make bloggers more responsible. In other words, they are being tamed in name of acting with responsibility.
If bloggers have still to learn a lot from journalists, if they are still novice and if they are still inexperienced I wish to know why all prominent magazines, newspapers, websites and web editions of prominent magazines are placing views of bloggers side-by-side views of their own writers/journalists on important pages? In India nearly all news papers have either introduced regular columns for bloggers or they are borrowing articles from them. If bloggers or blogging still lack required credibility, I wish to know why many journalists have become bloggers? Why are they playing the role of blogger? Why blog columns have been introduced by prominent magazines like Time, Newsweek, New York Times and etc.?
Lastly, it really sounds ludicrous when I notice that veteran journalists speak aloud about superiority of their ilk only because they have received certain training and they have got few qualifications. That gives them right not to acknowledge the traces of good writer and journalist in a person who did not become like them but instead became a blogger! In other words, if one becomes a blogger one loses the right to emerge as person of substance; after all, how dare one wrote beautiful articles, prepared brilliant news reports without qualification and training! This rigid insistence is a weak (and shrewd as well) attempt to maintain their superiority complex and monopoly, which in any case is destined to be crashed in new scenario that has emerged.
Anyway, I am just trying to establish that qualifications and training are not the only or ultimate parameter to measure the worth of a blogger. The ultimate parameter is the qualitative output a blogger delivers even as the blogger is devoid of critical resources, key infrastructure, financial gain and reward. On the contrary, a journalist enjoys all this advantages. The blogger, on the other hand, is most of time, a selfless crusader. So it really hurts that instead of being honoured, the blogger’s good work is ignored citing absence of training/qualification. I wish to know will they dare to dismiss the greatest performances of many actors, singers, sportsmen and businessmen, to name a few, only because they did all that not with help of training and qualification but with help of natural talent provided by the almighty Lord? Will the future generations refuse to acknowledge their worth only because they did not attend Business College, Acting College, Fine Arts College and etc? Please think over it carefully.