Every now and then, you stumble across a great read that makes you think, and this article is no exception
. This FAQ from the online journalism blog brings up some really interesting points I hadn't considered before about why comparing journalism and blogging isn't really a fair comparison at all.
First off: Journalism is a form, while blogging is a PLATform. Journalism can happen in print or online -- but blogs are a digital mechanism for delivering ideas, and not just in the written word.
Second: "You can't say blogging is or is not journalism," the post states. That's because the lines are blurred on both sides: There's probably just as much unregulated journalism as there is regulated blogging.
Third: People decide which sources they find credible. Sure, you could argue that a trained professional journalist is more credible than a random blogger who thought it would be fun to start writing, but not everyone will agree. As the article aptly points out, journalists are generally among the least trusted professions — but that doesn't discredit everyone working in journalism today. People "make judgements on a variety of criteria: the brand, the journalist, the context, and particularly the information itself."
Fourth: Not all journalists are formally trained, but many bloggers have studied journalism or media. So professional journalists and bloggers all get an equal chance at the public dismissing their work as bunk.
A while ago, we touched on this debate in this post
about the plight of blogger Crystal Cox, who was sued by a financial company because they didn't like what she had to say about them in one of her blog posts. One commenter asked a very poignant question: "Why can't it just boil down to whether the info is accurate or not?
Indeed, after reading the Online Journalism Blog article, the commenters question makes that much more sense. Since there are so many gray areas between journalism and blogging, then yes, it really should boil down to whether the information is accurate or not — no matter who writes it or in what form it happens to appear.
What do you think? Does the Online Journalism Blog settle the journalism vs. blogging debate for you?