How engaging publics can improve journalism…

Meanwhile, whilst we debate the ‘fray’ between politicians and journalists, in Britain Kevin Marsh, editor of the BBC College of Journalism, argues that attacks from a newly interactive public on journalism is actually good for it:

if you doubt the power of the audience… look what happened to Eason Jordan, Dan Rather and Judith Miller.

It’s uncomfortable… IF you’re used to the old one-to-many lecture that journalism used to be. But the reason it’s to be welcomed is that it will improve journalism; perhaps even raise our trust in what journalists tell us.

After all, if the argument for investigative journalism is that things done in the light are done with more integrity and accountability than things done in the dark… then the argument for investigating journalism – for audiences and those journalism puts in the news to investigate journalism – is unanswerable. Journalism that has integrity and honesty in the first place has nothing to fear.

In effect he argues that the ‘danger’ of an interactive audience is actually good for free journalism and perhaps, by extension, a open democratic society?


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