News 2.0: The Future of News in an Age of Social Media, Part 2

Saturday, January 16, 2010 9pm

Producer: CBC News
Listen Again

For more than a hundred years, the tools of journalistic production – the ability to report, photograph and record events and distribute that material to a mass audience – have resided in the hands of a small group of people who, by convention and by law, have been called journalists.

But in this 21st century the tools of production now belong to just about everyone. Thanks to “Web 2.0” technology – blogs, wikis, social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter and video sharing sites like YouTube – billions of people can transmit text, photos, and video instantly to a worldwide audience at virtually no cost. The tools of journalism are no longer the exclusive preserve of journalists.

There is much to celebrate about this democratization of the media, but there are also reasons to be concerned about the loss of an independent, professional journalistic filter at a time when everyone can be their own media. Can online communities of “citizen journalists” be counted on to help us make informed choices as citizens and consumers? What’s lost, and what’s gained when “News 1.0” gives way to “News 2.0?”