What can journalists learn from bloggers?

Back when Apple and blackberries were just fruits, journalists were only found in newspapers and on TV. Today, with the ever-growing Internet dependence, fruit names are just as likely to be describing a device, as the food, and an online blogger could well be considered a journalist.

The most prominent distinction between a blogger and a traditional journalist is the amount of personality and opinion that are incorporated into blogs.  Blogs allow for conversation, discussion and even argument, to be brought to the news.

Traditional journalistic guidelines tell the reporter to simply present the news, without displaying their personal opinion. Bloggers take an immediate and opposite approach. Most bloggers are very direct and colorful with their point of view, putting themselves into their writing by displaying their perspective.

That is not to say that opinion is left entirely out of news corporations. It may become obvious if the business is leaning toward being a right or left-wing supporter based on what news they report, word choice, or when and where they report on a story.

Blogs also offer for a conversation to occur between the writer and readers. Something that is difficult to transpire in customary journalism, without screaming at the TV or shaking your head at a newspaper headline. Readers have the option of commenting their thoughts onto the blog, provoking conversation, and maybe even altering someone else’s opinion with their thoughts and insight.

What might be most frightening to the neo-luddite would be how easy and accessible it is to become a blogger. Virtually anyone could become a blogger, and present unreliable or biased information to the public. However, even printed news is known to have reported false accounts, and format of blogging allows the writer and reader to easily correct facts, and discuss controversial topics.

Ultimately, the power of debate and dialogue is the most influential aspect of a blog, and something traditional news could definitely benefit from. People benefit from the opinions of others, and it is important to be exposed to many positions and be able to have your voice heard.

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