Here are three examples of citizen journalism websites you might want to imitate:
The first example comes from the UK - a blog called BloodandProperty http://bloodandproperty.blogspot.com/. This blogger was brought to my attention by UK Guardian blogger Dave Hill who refers to him (or her?) as “a Londoner who is inquisitive, persistent, literate, sane, interested in local issues and very interested in politics.” Hill has added BloodandProperty to his list of Top London Bloggers. One reason Hill listed BloodandProperty was that the blog recently scored an interesting interview with a Hackney town council leader. This achievement of a locally focused blogger demonstrates that bloggers who develop a following with well written, well delivered news will eventually demand the attention of local politicians.
Travel with me, please from the UK to Sri Lanka so I can introduce you to a very energetic citizen journalism project that is getting two-thousand page views a day for their nationally oriented website (www.groundviews.org). Groundview’s “about” page says, “Groundviews is Sri Lanka’s first and only award winning citizens journalism website and features an unparalleled range of ideas, opinions and analyses on humanitarian issues, media freedom, human rights, peace, democratic governance and constitutional reform.” They also brag that they have not received any outside funding since February 2007. These folks in Sri Lanka are doing a very fine job!
Our worldwide tour on the worldwide web will now stop in Singapore and visit The Online Citizen - http://theonlinecitizen.com/. (Dang, I wish I had their URL!) But before you read anything, here is a warning: read their “about” page FIRST where they do some serious boasting about being an advocacy journalism sight. No matter what you think about advocacy journalism, read their argument in favor of the way they advocate. I think they argue their position quite effectively. Are they worthy of imitating? You make the call.
There are more citizen journalism websites and blogs than you can count - and many more to come. Citizen journalists have just started to unleash their potential around the world! Watch them as they watch the world and tell the world what is happening.
A point of personal privilege, if you don’t mind:
The recently published book I coauthored with Susan Carson Cormier, “Handbook for Citizen Journalists,” just got a big boost from well-read blogger and citizen media authority, Jack Driscoll, an advisor for the Center for the Future of Civic Media at MIT. Previously he was at the Boston Globe newspaper for nearly 40 years, seven as editor. To read his blog about our book, CLICK HERE.