Definition For A Citizen Journalist

Subscribe by email:

Ron Sylvester finds a very good definition for a citizen journalist:

The business of big media is watching their stocks fall, while watching the rise of citizen journalists. But what is a citizen journalist, and what makes them different from professional journalists. Even SPJ, the largest organization of professional journalists, struggles for that definition.
Serena Carpenter gives the best one I’ve seen:
β€œAn individual who intends to publish information meant to benefit a community.”

That just about wraps it up perfectly.

Similar Posts:

Be Sociable, Share!
Tags: , ,


  1. Paul Chenoweth said January 23, 2009 | Permalink

    I think it is a good start for a definition. To me, that sounds more like the definition for a ‘citizen broadcaster’ or ‘citizen voice’. I would expect someone who accepts the label of ‘citizen journalist’ to acknowledge responsibility/accountability for ethics, accuracy, and fairness.

    This is a discussion that needs to see more daylight.

  2. newscoma said January 23, 2009 | Permalink

    That’s a very good point, Paul. I like the way your thinking.
    Citizen Journalist really is to broad a term because there are rules. And anyone that considers themselves a citizen journalist needs to understand the huge responsibility that goes with it.
    That’s one of the biggest complaints I here from established journalists regarding blogging.

  3. sadcox said January 23, 2009 | Permalink

    I figured out pretty early on when blogging about local news that:

    1) I’m (barely) qualified to talk about my own personal accounts and opinions
    2) I don’t want the responsibility that comes with being a journalist, so even those personal accounts and opinions need to be carefully considered before I put them out there for everyone to read.

    I am not (and don’t want to be) a citizen journalist. πŸ™‚

    It’s called a “profession” for a reason–the people that practice it are professionals at it.


Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *




  • July 2011
  • June 2011
  • August 2009
  • July 2009
  • June 2009
  • May 2009
  • April 2009
  • March 2009
  • February 2009
  • January 2009
  • December 2008
  • Categories

  • Categories