Media Analysis Blog

Dynamic coverage of war in Gaza

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For a long time journalists feared the implications of new media. The profession is too important to let fall to the whims of inexperienced bloggers and citizen journalists with little or no regard for standards, after all. But bloggers and citizen journalists offer a perspective and innovation that has been absent from traditional media. Some media critics have pushed for greater collaboration (Barnes, 2012) so the public can benefit both from the insider perspectives of citizen journalists and the standards of traditional journalists. And I must admit, considering my own apprehensions as an old school journalist, when it happens in just the right way, it works and it works well.

Global Voices, for instance, is a cooperative of more than 800 writers, analysts and online media experts who report on the news from a unique perspective, taking advantage of new media and citizen journalists while adhering to ethical standards common in traditional journalism.

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The public policy and public perception consequences of unrestricted web publishing

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This week I’m going to evaluate the sources used in a New York Times article, “Faces of an immigration system overwhelmed by women and children,” (Fausset, R., Belson, K., June, 2014). It’s a decent story, follows basic news guidelines, gives us current information, context so we can understand the situation and eye witness reports by the journalists on the scene, but it lacks comment from one of the most important sources — the immigrants.

The reason I selected this article to critique was actually because of another article one of my relatives in Texas posted on Facebook yesterday. It was the picture on the post that first caught my attention, it was of a desperate looking Latina woman holding her baby. It looked sad and as if they were in a terrible situation, and I was hoping to learn more about this woman’s plight. The headline was the second thing to catch my attention: “Medical staff warned: Keep your mouths shut about illegal immigrants or face arrest,” (Starnes, T., July 2014). The photo didn’t seem to go with the headline, I was confused, so I clicked. What I found was a very strange article, not well sourced and no context given — it seemed as if it was an opinion piece disguised as a news story. It doesn’t even attempt to explore the root of the issue.

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How do you know what you know? A look at the Facebook news frenzy

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Questions posed to me for an assignment exploring social media and the truth:

• How do you know what you know?
• Name one new thing you learned using a social media site today and explain why you believe it is true.
• What source did you use to acquire this information?
• At times, are social media sites reliable for obtaining credible information?

Hmmm, how do I know what I know? That’s difficult to answer. I feel sort of like a detective. I observe, that’s huge. I research, a lot. I listen, sometimes just because I know I should. And I make connections. Based on prior knowledge, and tricks I’ve picked up over the years, I make connections that form patterns and help guide me pretty close to complete understanding.

Ok, so I don’t do that every time I come across something new, because before I do any of that I judge a new thing’s significance, whether it is worthy of further thought and exploration. I mean who has time to research everything? But the more you do it the easier it becomes and the more prior knowledge you build on.

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