The active audience : transforming journalism from gatekeeping to gatewatching
Bruns, Axel (2008) The active audience : transforming journalism from gatekeeping to gatewatching. In Paterson, Chris & Domingo, David (Eds.) Making Online News : The Ethnography of New Media Production. Peter Lang, New York.
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"A.J. Liebling once said, 'Freedom of the press is guaranteed only to those who own one.' Now, millions do" (Bowman & Willis, 2003: 47; original quote: Liebling, 1960); similarly, while those millions who are now active as part-time news bloggers, citizen journalists, and political commentators do not (yet?) operate their own opinion polling services, there is little to stop them from offering their own interpretations of available polling data, informed by their own experience as 'average' citizens rather than by the accepted wisdom of professional journalists or the political spin of media minders. Indeed, at least in the Australian example, some of the most insightful analyses of polling data are available from blogs such as Poll Bludger or Mumble, operated by student and professional psephologists – scientists specialising in the statistical analysis of voting intentions and election results. Especially in such cases, the expertise of non-journalists in ‘reading’ the mood of the populace clearly exceeds that of journalists and pundits, regardless of who owns the polling services themselves.
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