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100 articles – ‘SuperMedia: the future as “networked journalism”‘

Journalists used to write journalism. But now there are others involved in the news gathering process, as Charlie Beckett explains in this 2008 piece that has been selected by Shashini Gamage for inclusion in our '100 articles' project.

‘SuperMedia: the future as “networked journalism”’ by Charlie Beckett

Some of the most remarkable footage in the last decade has come from citizens who happened to be there and sent it into newsrooms. Opening closed newsrooms to the outside world partially transforms the production of media content to a network of people who remains connected at all times. This 2008 article by British journalist and academic Charlie Beckett explores networked journalism; ‘the opening of the production process from start to finish and beyond.’

I think every journalist should have studied the process of networked journalism ages ago. With the emergence of the internet as a powerful communication tool, it has become impossible for traditional media to ignore the significance of participatory media. Journalists no longer dictate the production process. Without the access to a network, it will just get harder for journalism to survive. The world is full of events that require the contribution of citizens to make news. 

A journalist cannot always be there when news happens. But people are always there. Nowadays almost everybody possesses a mobile phone with recording capacity, be it in Asia, Africa or Europe. This network is a resource. It is not about by-lines or status as a journalist. It is about being part of that network where everybody owns the story; not only the journalist.

Charlie Beckett is the director of POLIS, which is  a joint initiative from LSE and the London College of Communication aimed at working journalists, people in public life and students in the UK and around the world.

Shashini Gamage is a Master of Global Communications student at La Trobe University. More on our ‘100 articles’ project, including details of how to contribute can be found here.

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