How far does citizen photojournalism bring to professionalism in the new media world?

In Uncategorized on June 3, 2009 at 12:45 am

Unit 2.4         Critical Perspectives on Photojournalism and Documentary Photography
Scope of Research: Citizen Photojournalism

Topic: How far does citizen photojournalism bring to professionalism in the new media world?

Keywords: Citizen (Photo)journalism; Public (Photo)journalism; Alternative (Photo)journalism; Professionalism; Higher Education in (Photo)journalism; New Media;


There are much celebrations about the rise of citizen (photo)journalism in the new media era. The interactive content of Web 2.0, that is a WWW world that facilitates communication, information sharing, interoperability and collaboration, allows instant information/knowledge on the virtual platform, that is believed to be civil and liberal. Everyone who is anyone is able to upload information, or specifically news, be it textual or visual, and be a citizen-slash-journalist. Ideally, as Steve Outing (2005) points out in his The 11 Layers of Citizen Journalism, by integrating citizen and pro journalism under one roof, ‘It’s this vision of citizen journalism complementing and adding to professional journalism that is so compelling — at least in theory.’ (Outing, 2005) The world could never be more ideal than that, in theory.

In this research paper, my attempt is to look at citizen (photo)journalism from a skeptical perspective. As an aspired individual who wants to a professional practitioner in the new media industry, I question how far does citizen photojournalism bring to professionalism in the new media world. The downside and consequence of citizen photojournalism needs to be looked at squarely. Are we heading for a stage whereas professionalism and professional training will be undermined? (When amateur works) Do we embrace free content over paid work? (Why we need to pay someone to do that if we have an entire world of citizen to provide content) What is the impact of citizen photojournalism towards higher education in photojournalism? (Forget LCC, I am a photojournalist-slash-citizen) It is believed that, in the near future, paid paper and subscribed online news service will be substituted by free paper and free online news service. It is also believed that, for the sake of survival financially, free online news service provider could only trade off the business by selling its client database, work or holding of copyright to large multinational corporate. The case of Getty Images acquires Scoopt spells irony of the paradox of professionalism and citizen photojournalism. In this research paper, I target to point out and discuss the aforementioned areas in the context of work and professionalism in photojournalism/photography.

Peter Fraser – Intelligent Still Life

In Uncategorized on May 20, 2009 at 2:21 am

It is difficult to be water for one who has seen the great seas ,
and difficult to be clouds for one who has seen the Yangtze Gorges.

Yuan Zhen, Thought on the diseased wife No 4; translated by Lin Yutang

Francis Ford Coppola

In Uncategorized on May 20, 2009 at 12:42 am

“If you’re making a movie which isn’t just an entertainment ride, you have to offer people something emotional,… And, for me, if it’s going to be emotional, it’s got to be about my family, because that is something I can really get emotional about. I love my family. Family is where you learn what love is.”

“Nothing in the film actually happened,… but everything is true. The relationship Vincent had with Alden in the movie was very much the relationship I had with my brother: everything that I loved, I got from him.”

Nick Roddick interview with Francis Ford Coppola (2009)  London Evening Standard (19 May 2009: 32-33)