Monday, December 11

Why Bloggers Are Not Journalists

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The question of why bloggers are not journalists hints at an ongoing paradigm shift within the worlds of global news-gathering, the internet information superhighway, the nature of knowledge in general, and the efforts of writers to provide informative content to an ever-expanding audience. As the way human beings communicate and share respective tidbits continues to ebb and sway, so too will their understanding of the differences both subtle and overt between differing schools of thought on endeavors both creative and practical, including matters of journalistic integrity.

Credentials

There exists a certain formal system of press credentials issued to journalists, the rules behind their issuing of which can differ from country to country, and can actually overlap between classical journalist beat writers and bloggers. Historically, though, the gap has been visibly prevalent, and this discrepancy will likely cast a shadowy pallor for years to come, despite the increasing trend toward viewing certain traditional avenues of publication as being archaic, even obsolete, such as that of the print newspaper. Even with such perspectives intact, there still exists a nearly quantifiable gap between a professional journalist employed by a news organization and a “mere” blogger, even if said blog-writer does so professionally.

Standards

Although many people from both academic and business backgrounds may disagree on the necessary strictness behind communication standards, whether the formatting of business letters or how to cite sources in an APA paper, it can usually be agreed that writing, in any form, should have certain standards of professionalism in place. One reason why bloggers are not journalist is simply that journalists are trained in and practice certain hard-and-fast rules to their writing, in an effort to produce high-quality content. The rules for bloggers, who are often just seeking website hits, are often a bit different, or ignore proper rules altogether.

Definition

The simplest reason why bloggers are not journalists is very simple: The terms “blogger” and “journalist” mean two different concepts. Setting aside any disagreeable elements of standards, context, environment, era, publication, pay, motive, or other component at hand, the fact still remains that the two positions represent different ideas.

The essence of why bloggers are not journalists need not be complex nor confrontational. The two operate in differing circumstances and, like in most cases of comparisons, should be judged on a case-by-case basis. Whether a journalist can be found “better” than a blogger will differ in its case every time, and readers everywhere should pay heed to the sources they enjoy the most, rather than become overly involved in the petty, minor, ultimately meaningless differences.

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