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DEPARTMENT OF MASS COMMUNICATION

FACULTY OF SOCIAL SCIENCES


AHMADU BELLO UNIVERSITY, ZARIA

COURSE CODE: MCOM414


COURSE TITLE: ONLINE JOURNALISM
PURPOSE:
A COMPILED COPY OF GROUP ASSIGNMENTS

CREDIT: MEMBERS OF THE EDITORIAL TEAM

OMOLAOYE SODIQ
IBRAHIM MUHAMMED SAGIR
ABDULBASIT ADAMU
KUYET BAMAI

Lecturer:
Muhammmed Hashim Suleiman

GROUP ONE (1)


With evidential citations, hyperlinks, visuals and multimedia contents, compare

and

contrast conventional journalism and online journalism


INTRODUCTION
Journalism, by definition, is both a product and process. As a product, people purchase news and
by doing so, it becomes a commodity. As a process, people gather information for the purpose of
publishing it for others. (www.ojtj.blogspot.com) Adam (1993), defined journalism as a form of
expression used to report and comment in the public media on events and ideas, a product of
individual journalists and the culture in which they work, always marked by five principles of
design. Journalism has been around since people recognized a need to share information about
themselves with others (Zelizer, 2004, p. 2). However, the study of journalism is a more recent
phenomenon. There are several reasons why the study of journalism is a worthwhile endeavor
for scholars. First, news shapes the way we see the world, ourselves and each other.
It is the stories of journalists that construct and maintain our shared realities (cf. Carey, 1989).
Because of this, news can become a singularly important form of social glue; our consumption of
stories about current events large and small binds us together in an imagined community
(Anderson, 1983) of co-readers. Through the rituals of consuming and discussing the texts of
journalism we come to understand and construct ourselves as subjects within local, national and,
increasingly, global contexts. Websters dictionary defines the word journalism as: the
profession of reporting or photographing or editing news stories for one of the media. The
interesting thing about this description is that it does not specify any one type of media. And that
is perfectly suitable to our world of journalism today. People have several different outlets in
which to gain their information. Not only is news prevalent in traditional forms of journalism,
such as print and broadcast, but it is also becoming more and more mainstream in the world of
online journalism. (www.webster.com).
Online Journalism
When discussing online journalism, it is important to realize just how significant of a role it
plays in our society today. The most common form of online journalism is probably reflected in
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the Blogospherea world of several different news stories, graphics, and links, all compiled
into what is known as a Weblog, or, what its come to be known as, a blog. Such a
seemingly informal style of writing may not appear to be all that appealing to the general public.
Why would someone spend their time going online and searching for different news stories when
they could gain the same type of information simply by opening their morning newspaper or
turning on the local television news station?
However, the world of blogging is actually a lot more popular than one might think. Although
many people find blogs interesting and even amusing to read, not everyone finds them as
credible as traditional forms of journalism. There are a few reasons for this. Perhaps the most
significant reason would be that many people simply dont trust the actual content found in
online journalism. (Terry Lee, 2007) Aside from lack of originality, an even bigger concern is
the issue of the credibility of the content itself. When you read a story in the newspaper or watch
it on television, the information you see and hear is usually very accurate. However, when you
obtain your news through online journalism, the same be said for its trustworthiness. Many
people do not think so. One reason for this is that with online journalism, practically anyone can
author a so-called news story. In this form of journalism, you dont have the reassurance that a
well-known newspaper reporter or broadcast journalist is relaying you factual, reliable
information. You have to determine if the person writing the blog is deemed a credible author or
not. If you think about it, pretty much anyone could be writing it. Online%20vs. %20Traditional
%20Journalism.html
DIFFERENCES AND SIMILARITIES BETWEEN ONLINE JOURNALISM AND
CONVENTIONAL JOURNALISM
The major similarity that both online and traditional journalism have is that they both report the
news. However, Melissa states and provides key examples of how the two are adversely
different. In the first topic of ethics, she gives an example that accuracy has diminished as more
and more online journalists want to get the scoop first, or get the news first. There isnt much
of a big distinguishable factor between traditional or online in the timeliness versus accuracy
debate. The main difference is certainly that traditional journalists still have to get their facts
straight as opposed to online, in which they dont have any real consequence as stated in above
website. Even then this isnt much different from sensational journalism during the whole Hearst
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and Pulitzer era. Another key difference stated was that online journalists are not considered to
be actually journalists, mostly blogging and self-opinions. Melissa provided an example in which
online journalists tend to be biased because due to the lack of objectivity. (www.johnchow.com).
Another major difference is the medium used for information dissemination. Traditional
journalism disseminates information through printed materials, such as the newspapers, and
other broadcasting equipment like the television and radio. Online journalism, on the other hand,
has its articles published in the internet. For online journalism, the writer or journalist writes his
articles on his web log (blog). Some online journalists are writers not employed in any media
company. Some online journalists also do not gain any profit from their articles. Being
unemployed, they do not have any deadlines to beat when posting an article. The traditional
journalist, on the other hand, writes his articles to be published in a newspaper. Whether they are
working as a freelance writer or under a media company, they get paid for their articles and have
deadlines to beat. The length of the articles posted also differs. In online journalism, the writer
can write a lengthy article, while in traditional the writer has limited space for his article.
Also, in online journalism internet users only get to read news articles with a stable internet
connection. While in traditional journalism, people get to be updated with the latest happenings
without going online. Today, writers and journalists can use multimedia elements for online
journalism like as text, graphics, sound, motion picture, animation, video, 3D etc., but in
traditional journalism they cant do these types of practices. In Online journalism, readers can
comment or can give their feedback instantly on that particular article or some other write ups,
but in traditional journalism, readers response is too delayed and limited readers comments are
published in Traditional journalism. In Online Journalism, information is regularly updated by
minute to minute, as they happen. While on the other hand, in Traditional Journalism, it takes
time, like as in newspaper, if something is happened after the publishing of that day newspaper,
that

happening

will

be

published

on

the

next

day

newspaper.

http://

jmcenotes.blogspot.com.ng/2012/0 traditional-journalism-vs- online.html.


Other differences and similarities between online journalism and conventional journalism
include; Product centric perspective: The digital medium is one where content is totally
interlinked with the product. Reporters at a newspaper are not really expected to know how a
printing machine operates! But in the digital space, content teams are expected to have
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knowledge about how search-engines work, be receptive towards trending- topics, drive the
sites interactive elements, use multimedia tools for better packaging and in generally be aware
of what goes into the management of the site. While a print journalist will focus more on the
language while framing a headline, a digital media person will think in terms of keywords,
trending topics and ease of discovery for the user. b. Writing style: Given that digital-content
today is not only consumed on the computer, but across multiple platforms, writers are conscious
about attention spans. While a print journalist may take pride over an elaborate article that spans
over pages; in digital, brevity is the name of the game.
Writers are conscious of the fact that their stories are being read on screens smaller than fiveinches. Some of the crafty expressions that would be a pleasure to read in print might not gel
well with the digital consumer. Use of complicated phrases is also bad for content discovery, as
the average user searches using terms from spoken English. For writers who switch from print to
web, this is usually the biggest aspect they find hard to unlearn. c. Feedback: The Internet is a
ruthless medium and writers are usually not good at handling criticism. But due to the two-way
nature of interaction on the web, online reporters are far more used to feedback, as compared to
their print peers. Most online- writers begin as bloggers, so they have an appetite for making as
well as digesting nasty comments. But amidst all this commenting-noise there is also space for
healthy, constructive criticism. Web writers are accustomed to regular reality checks from users
in case of errors or potentially polarising points of view. And due to this continuous stream of
author-user interaction, web-writers are far more detached from their copy, flexible in style and
less emotionally invested in their story. d. Need for speed: Background research is of top priority
to any good journalist. But online writers do not always have the luxury of time. In the era of
phablets, digital teams have 247 access to their site. And page lineups change several times in
response to trending topics. So content that may be hot in the morning might be totally
irrelevant by afternoon. This is why there are cases of irresponsible reporting, based on Twitter
rumours, just to appear high on search. While basic rules of journalism do not change, content
writers in the digital space have to have a strong sense of quality check, and constantly filter the
information overload. e. Convergence: Traditional media still has the advantage of infrastructure.
Digital has the power of speed and multimedia presentation. Unlike print, thinking purely in
terms of text doesnt work here. So whether it is using a video from a TV bulletin or a slideshow
of images, they all make for engaging tools to hook the reader, and provide a complete audio5

visual experience. The packaging and aesthetics of the content are of supreme importance and
digital journalists think of this aspect very seriously, while planning and publishing their story. f.
User Generated Content: The Internet exposes journalists to a plethora of user-generated content.
At a time when camera-phones and social-media have made citizen journalism a reality,
reporters have to pay attention to the voice of the reader.
News websites cannot ignore viral content. A print journalist may wait for viral content to
become a rage, before considering it for a story But the online counterpart has to identify a
trend way in advance, and sense its viral potential much before mainstream media. If print
journalists have to be alert about the world around them, the ones on the web have to be in touch
with the sentiment of the online community, which can often be very unique from the real-worldview. g. Way forward: Given the dynamic mature of the medium, and real- time access to
analytics, content writers have to keep an eye on the performance of their story, and make tweaks
based on traffic rankings and search results. These digital media reporters have earned their
stripes in the age of social- media, where headlines are driven by trending hash-tags. And the
speed, at which you publish your story, is almost as important as the story itself. So while the
Internet still reports the same facts as traditional media, the ones writing for the web care a lot
more for user engagement than self-satisfying literary indulgence.
The digital journalist is a lot more in tune with whats on peoples minds, and is perhaps more of
an opinion moderator/aggregator rather than an opinion generator. News has become totally
democratic and the digital medium is where journalists are truly talking to the people and not at
them. Print journalism, journalists have very limited space to operate with. It therefore means
that articles, features and news stories have to be carefully written so that they do not cover much
space. Very lengthy articles and stories are a no-go area for print journalism because of the
limited space. Online journalism unlike print journalism has an infinite number of pages, which
mean space is not an issue. This therefore means that articles and stories can be lengthy in nature
since there is no page limit. The problem of controlling news quality online stems from the
inherent qualities of the Internet itself, where the invitation to be the media, and thus to
challenge traditional medias definitions of what counted as news as well as who qualified as a
journalist, [is] very much consistent with the animating ethos of the Internet (Allan, 2002).

Such statements reveal the resistance of the traditional news media to the idea that the content
of the Web is news, though not necessarily journalism (Jones, 2000).
TENSION BETWEEN TRADITIONAL

MEDIA JOURNALISM

AND ONLINE

JOURNALISM
The tension between traditional media journalism and online journalism is more of a conceptual
than technological issue as traditional media journalism exhibits not an aversion to new
technology but rather an attempt at a controlled incorporation of it. What is at stake is how, not
if, these new technological practices will be incorporated into journalistic practices (Bratich,
2004: 110). As the traditional news media have no real means of prohibiting online news sites
from disseminating their material, their strategy has been to dissuade online news seekers from
trusting the material found on those sites. By analysing the discourse surrounding online
reporting, Jordan (2007) observed how the traditional news media used accusations of
unprofessionalism and irresponsibility in their discussions of online news sites to discredit those
sites. Even at the dawn of the twenty first century, many professional journalists in the traditional
media remained skeptical of the Webs value as a news resource. News professionals lamented
the quality of ideas found online and harshly criticized the lack of gate-keeping in online
publishing. For example, Jordan (2007) found that broadcast journalists took pains to emphasise
the care and concern of their own reporting methods even as they continued to promise
increasing amounts of available information and urged their television viewers to go to their
news Websites. The message being broadcast was that the mainstream press could be trusted to
push all this information through to news seekers without compromising their own journalistic
integrity and credibility. (www.youtube.com/ onlinevstraditionaljournalism)
CONCLUSION
In a time where blogging is considered journalism and thousands of websites are being built
daily; it seems that traditional journalism, may be in danger of becoming extinct. All forms of
information are being sited on the internet; anyone with a computer can obtain the latest news on
Google, which is updated almost down to the minute. So if online journalism is supposedly
quicker, cheaper, and more convenient, the traditional journalist cannot survive except by just
going with the flow and adapting their style of writing for an on line audience. With the advent
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of the internet, a growing number of people have been reading the news and other happenings
around the globe online. This actually serves as a threat to newspapers and its reporters, who
practice traditional journalism. Online Journalism is an evolution; its even easier to get
published online. However, it cannot replace the concreteness of print or traditional journalism
practices etc. As long as print is making money traditional journalism is here to stay.

GROUP TWO (2)


Using your knowledge of online journalism, discuss the concept of entrepreneurial
journalism.
INTRODUCTION
Today, journalism and entrepreneurship are currently venturing into an important relationship
especially on the internet, freelancers are making significant contribution to greater media
pluralism as conventional media are often not independent. And acccording to Arens et al
(2011:404), the internet is a whole new medium for communication, and many advertising
people are still learning how to use it. This is an important issue since web users are both savvy
and sketical as well as influential. Media owners have little interest in independent reporting
since they exploit their newspapers and broadcasting channels for political or economic interest.
Due to this, journalist have been called to be self-employed. Although, entrepreneurial
Journalismencourage journalists to act in an economic sense, redefine their profession through
innovation and to explore new opportunities for making a living (Nedeljkovic et al, 2014 ).
Hence, entrepreneur journalists ideal focus is towards profit maximazation of media contents and
the medium. Before discussing entrepreneur journalism, lets look at what the following concepts
mean : online, journalism, online journalism and entrepreneur.
According to Ward (2003), online is the, generic term often used loosely to describe digital
information access, retrieval or dissemination. Ward added that the digital break down all
information. These can be data, text, graphics, audio, still pictures or video converted into
sequence of numbers (digital), transports it by wire, cable, or broadcast frequency to a distination
and then re- assembles it back into its original form via the internet components (world wide
web and electronic mail). According to Ganiyu (2004), Journalism is defined as the job of
gathering, writing, and dissemination of news and views about the society through the means of
the mass media (newspapers, magazines, radio, television, film, books and the new media i.e the
internet. to look at journalism in a more extended sphere, Ganiyu and Akinreti ( ) stated that, the
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term journalism, is the job of gathering, writing, processing and dissemination of news and
views about the society through the mass media. The difference between the former definition is
processing because not all journalists are train in gathering, or writing reports generally.
Concept of Online journalism and entrepreneurship
Online journalism according to Dueze (2003), is seen as jjournalism as it is produced more or
less exclusively for the World Wide Web (as the graphic interface of the internet). he went on to
say that, online journalist has to make decisions as to which media format or formats best
convey a certain story (multimediality), consider options for public to respond, interact or even
customize certain stories (interactivity), and think about ways to connect the story to other
stories, arrchives, resources and so forth through hyperlinks (hypertextuality). As The Concise
Encyclopedia of Economics put it, an entrepreneur is someone who organizes, manages, and
assumes the risks of a business or enterprise. Entrepreneurship is the process of discovering new
ways of combining resources. Also, according to Roig et al, entrepreneurrship is an essential
element for economic progress by identifying, assessing, and exploiting business
opportunities; creating new firms and/or renewing existing ones by making them more dynamic;
and by driving the economy forward- through innovation, competence, job creation and by
generally improving the wellbeing of the society. Journalists must be aware that people do not
really have all the luxury of time to read a website. What they do, is just scan for the information
presented, so, it must be concise and comprehensive (Arens et al, 2011).
Concept of entrepreneur journalism
Entrepreneurial journalism describes a field of media where journalism is the underlying
discipline upon which to create content based business and services that can make money,
rather than the popular view of journalism as a type of objective professional public service to be
provided to the citizenry. Entrepreneurial journalism is not about preserving old ways of thinking
or finding ways to protect market share. Rather it is about adapting, leveraging new technologies
and trends as well as shaping the future of journalism (Bathke, 2010). Entrepreneurial journalism
offers a chance to think of content creation in business term as it gains popularity. This field also
has the potential to change the way that we find and consume information and change our world
in the process. In a nutshell, entrepreneurial journalism is owning a business not necessarily in
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terms of stock ownership but going through a process and achieving an outcome; earning to
respond to ambiguity and change; innovation- that is, putting things in different ways to achieve
different results; and focusing on the business.
However, entrepreneurial journalism involves starting something you care about, that is
something you are very passionate about; getting it online quickly; not waiting for the website to
be perfect for you to have all the answers and, improving as you go; and improving as you go. In
today`s digital world, journalism is gaining completely new role and dimension. Although online
publishing can influence the reduction of the circulation of printed editions, the internet is giving
a new chance to all journalists, because it is the best friend to journalistic entrepreneurship and
online journalism are closely connected to online marketing. The biggest advantage of the
internet is that every written and published article is living online as long as the website itself
exist. It does not live only is one issue for one day; it does not get thrown away after reading.
An online article is publically available everyday and depending on how it was written and on
the structure of the website a once written article for which two or three hours were spent can be
read 100 times a day, every day, and 365 days a year. That is, the main potential of the internet
and the starting point of entrepreneurial journalism.
ENTREPRENEURIAL JOURNALISTS AS A PROFIT MAXIMIZER
Journalists channels their articles or writing with the focus of making profits and these depends
on: the subject area the he or she writes on; and whether the journalist is a good seller. The
reporters here charges for their services and advertising space (Nedeljkovic et al, 2014). He went
ahead to stressed that, if a journalistic entrepreneur running a website and wants to monetize it,
they will sonner be in a position to sell advertyising space, a part of the website, a part of the
text, a link in the text, etc. hence online journalists becomes salesperson because they will have
to negotiate the price. Entrepreneurial journalism precede just writing. With good name and
serious website with a clear target group can led to wining for internet market.
THE

FOUR

MOST

IMPORTANT

METHODOLOGY

AN

ENTREPRENEUR

JOURNALIST CAN CREATE A MARKET NICHE


As it is said, a good basis is the key to success. To create a market niche, entrepreneur
journalists must engage in supply analysis, demand analysis, competition analysis and
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profitability

calculation

through

detail

research.

SUPPLY ANALYSIS:
Acccording to Nedejlkovic et al (2014:25), The more potential topics, services, and products
about which articles can be written, the greater the chances for success of the journalistic
undertaking. There are alot of internet websites owned by entrepreneurs who have started
selling products. However, the supply analysis can be subject to Google search of keywords to
locate products and services supply by others which entrepreneur journalists can write about.
DEMAND ANALYSIS:
Concrete tool such as Googkle Keyword Planner which can help the journalistic entrepreneur
to analyse the demand for a product, services, internet areas and the Google Trends presents
seasonal searches of specific keywords. The ability of an entrepreneurial journalist to combine
both tools will lead them to obtaining very good and useful information about demand on the
internet. Therefore, starting an online project without checking how demanded a certain topic is,
may result to crash of entrepreneurial journalists internet websites (Nedejlkovic, 2014).
COMPETITION ANALYSIS:
This is similar to supply analysis although it focuses on websites which could be a competition
recognition. Entrepreneurial journalist should under take a thorough study of competitors and
find out whether there is a website with similar ideas with thiers. Also, they should bear in mind
that other phrases and keyword from that subject area which audience uses to search for bloggers
or websites. however, in today global world it is very difficult to find an area without
competition and for that reason the job can be localiozed to specific countries(Nedejlkovic,
2014).
PROFITTABILITY CALCUULATE:
Here, the profit aspect relies on the subject area an entrepreneur journalist is writing on. hence, it
is very important to choose a profitable market needs. To sum it up, Nedeljkovic stated that, a
good supply, large demand, low competition and good profitability in the subject area represent
the

main

guidelines

for

the

choice

12

of

suitable

market

niche.

BUSINESS MODELS OF ENTREPRENEURIAL JOURNALISM


he three main business models among others which can lean to profit in addition to the previous
market analysis. These are as follows:
1. Sales of advertising space
2. Percentage from concrete actions or visitors
3. The freemium model
1. SALES OF ADVERTISING SPACE:
In entrepreneur jounalism things that can be sold includes a link in the text; a banner in the text, a
banner in a part of the websites, and a banner in the background of the websites. so which never
space is choosen is usually sold for a time period but there is also the option of charging by
display, based on the statistic of the numbers of displays.
2. PERCENTAGE FROM CONCRETE ACTIONS OF VISITORS:
Percentage from concrete actions from visitors is more demanding but fair profit compared to the
sales of advertising space because the website is earning from the concrete actions of one
visitors.the actions include phone calls, sending an email or the purchse of a product the text is
about. this business model can provide long time profit which can be larger compare to the sales
of advertising space.
3. THE FREEMIUM BUSINESS MODEL:
The freemium business model means that a part of the content or services on the websites is free
whereas more options, content or services are charged. \

THE SEARCH FOR TRUTH IN THIS TYPE OF JOURNALISM


According to Forbes Magazine, there is a rise of entrepreneurial journalists in a world seeking
credible voices especially the digital publishing and social media have turned the economics of
journalism upside down as a result of contents which is everywhere, produced by everyone, not
just those who own the presses or control the airwaves or cables. The Forbes Magazine has many
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entrepreneurial journalists of 1,000 contributing to news brands around the world as freelancers.
This includes writers from the most elite universities, best-selling book authors, management
consultants, business leaders and other expertise for print, broadcast or internet consumers. What
they need to do is just to keep a Google doc open in a tab on their chrome browser for updates.
Journalists goes into entrepreneur journalism today because of the relevancy it offers in the field.
George Anders, stated that readers benefit by getting coverage that is uniquely relevant to their
interests, instead of being at the mercy of a publication mistaken guesses. However, other
importance is that: There are new ideas influencing the older media entities to evolve for
example, in the middle of 2010, a brilliant experimental journalism site called true/slant was
purchased by Forbes. Start ups create excitement and pioneer new forms of media: the poynter
promise prize was one of the first of what will likely be several competition style idea gathering
efforts to bring some of the most pioneering ideas in entrepreneurial journalism to the attention
of many. As more of these startup-style ideas enter into the discussions about the future of
journalism, they will unlock new forms of content creation and new business models that the
entire industry will eventually look towards. Overlaps with big social media trends such as
content curation, that is, one of the biggest trends that is already shaping the future of marketing
is the focus on content curation as a way to provide value to customers and share an expertise
without necessarily creating content.
THE BASIC ELEMENTS OF ENTREPRENEUR JOURNASLISM
There are three core elements of entrepreneurial journalism. that is, three main requirements in
order to iniate and facilitate the work of online journalists and computer assisted rdeporters.
These are: 1. basics of online journalism 2. internet entrepreneurship and 3. website production.
However, the basics of online journalism that can helps helps in creating good content for
entrepreneurial journalists comprises the following seven steps: title or titleblock; composition
and use of keywords in the text; overview and easy text scanning; multimedia text editing; links
in the text and linking technique; tags or keywords; and text optimization
IMPORTANCES OR BENEFITS OF ENTREPRENEURIAL JOURNALISM
According to David Westphal, entrepreneurial skills foster the needed cultural change in the
media industry: Its important because the news culture of the last few decades has been anti14

entrepreneurial. So these courses amount to almost an antidote for long established cultures.
Hence, entrepreneurial attitude is needed to shape the future of an industry in transformation.
Also, its essential in the new digital landscape for journalists to deeply understand the business
and economics of journalism. This is an imperative cultural change that we believe professionals
should embrace in order to confront the disruption of the industry and foster change and
innovation. Another related issue mentioned several times is that journalists working not only as
individual entrepreneurs, but for journalists working in established media organizations or
established startups. Speaking in the same vein, Leslie Walker explains, News media business
models have been massively disrupted, and must be reinvented for the digital age. Now more
than ever journalism students need greater understanding of the business side of media and news.
Even if they dont start their own news ventures, tomorrows graduates likely will be involved in
intrapreneurial initiatives for media companies. Journalists need the skills to exploit the
opportunities arising from the digital landscape and the low barriers to entry. James Breiner
examines an important concept saying, opportunities that arise for entrepreneurs in the digital
landscape are not only business opportunities but also journalistic opportunities: Journalists
have an opportunity to fill the gaps left by traditional media, which are cutting staff and
coverage.
The business and journalistic opportunity offered is to identify niches of reader interest not being
adequately served by mass media now, and there are many such as environment, education, local
business, gender, local culture and language, local data, cultural coverage of which the list is
virtually infinite. This opportunity aims to create a community that will be attractive to both
users of the community and those who want to reach that community. Beyond advertising, other
possibilities for monetizing a community are direct sales of products, sale of specialized
information, consulting in communication, and membership (members will often pay much more
than subscribers), events and foundations among others. The course is necessary because most
journalists who launch a product on the web lack basic business skills, such as identifying a
target audience, creating marketing to attract the target audience, developing various ways to
monetize the attention on the web and so on. Furthermore, from a research conducted, there are
two categories of reasons for the establishment of entrepreneurial journalism as identified by
Nedeljkovic et al (2014).

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Firstly, the entrepreneurial skills prepare students to create their own jobs. This is particularly
relevant in a context of massive layoffs in the industry and shrinking media operations. Tim
McGuire accentuated the idea of the changing labor market: Most of the jobs they will occupy
during their career dont exist right now. Secondly, another category said that entrepreneurial
skills are also essential for professionals to work in transforming media companies and new
media startups that already require journalists to participate in intrapreneurial projects and
embrace an entrepreneurial mindset. Whether entrepreneurship is an activity related exclusively
to new venture creation or within existing firms is a common topic in academic entrepreneurship
literature. What was found was that a majority of the lecturers tend to address both approaches to
entrepreneurship. Hence, results show a conception of entrepreneurship more focused on
creating and exploiting opportunities, regardless of the context where this activity takes place (
Nedejkovic, 2014).
Moreso, unlike the traditional journalism, entrepreneurial journalism has unique characteristics.
Lecturers in entrepreneurial journalism identify these unique characteristics and treat them as
important issues to address, and that should no longer be used as a justification to build a wall
between the business and editorial sides of the journalistic work. In fact, lecturers and
entrepreneurial journalists tend to argue that these barriers were detrimental for the industry and
got journalists disengaged from their audience. According to Nedeljkovic et al (2014) in their
book, Entrepreneurial Journalism Handbook, online journalists should bear in mind that with
the transfer to web 2.0 technologies, there were huge changes in the nature of journalism itself
unlike the usual one-way communication flow but today the border between journalist and the
audience are fading leading to two-way communication. Audience too have become content
creators and distributors.
WHAT IS UNIQUE ABOUT ENTREPRENEURSHIP IN JOURNALISM
On website design and development journalists` role is to create a high quality product for
readers as a writer and editor, develops a business project and ensure its sustainability and
profitability (Nedejlkovic et al, 2014). However, before you start creating your website, its very
vital that you take a free online course about creating entrepreneurial project, create a scheme of
your business model, and create a basic business plan, Nedejlkovic et al said. Toughill, stated
that entrepreneurship journalism is unique because, Journalists operate with a sense of mission,
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and journalism is a service that is broadly considered a public good essential to democracy. In
other words, there are externalities involved that are not present in many other industries. may be
to explore the nexus of how that sense of mission is supported by a business model, when the
two are in conflict and mechanisms for resolving that tension.
CONCLUSION
This work, though may have some short comings, should provide a limelight for those who are
interested to engage or delve into entrepreneurial journalism especially mass communication
students and practioners though the knowledge gathered in the cause of their study. This is also
helpful today due to lack of job in the country. So, journalists can survive in the market and earn
money from their skills exhibited and personal website, blogs or twitter. According to Veciana,
the entrepreneurial roles implies the discovery, assessment and exploitation of opportunities,
that is, new products, services or production processes; new strategies and organizational forms
and new markets for products and inputs that did not previously exist.

17

GROUP THREE (3)


Using your knowledge of online journalism attempt an exhaustive review of the book The
Cult of the Amateur: How the Internet is Destroying our Culture by Andrew keen
About the Author:
Andrew Keen is a Silicon Valley entrepreneur whose writings on culture, media and technology
have appeared in top national dailies of the world. He is the founder of and Chief Executive
Officer of Audiocafe.com. He is also the host of the acclaimed internet show, AfterTv and
frequently appears on radio and television. Keene lives in Berkeley, California.
About the Book: Cult of the Amateur is a two hundred and forty-two (242) paged book, which
is divided into eight (8) chapters, with further notes and acknowledgments/index. It was
published in the United States of America in 2007 by Doubleday, an imprint of the Doubleday
Broadway Publishing Group, a division of Random House, Inc., New York. With the ISBN
Serial No: 978-0-385-52080-5.
INTRODUCTION
Andrew Keene compares the pre-internet age, with todays technology world where he draws an
analogy of T.H. Huxleys scenario of infinite monkeys empowered with infinite technology
seemed more like a mathematical jest than a dystopian vision. Keen emphasizes the
consequences of a flattening of culture that is blurring the lines between traditional audience and
author, creator and consumer, expert and amateur. In the Cult of the Amateur, Keen reveals the
world of Web 2.0 where amateur internet users are likened to monkeys. These amateurs with less
talent in the creative arts, rather than creating masterpieces for online consumption, are creating
an endless digital forest of mediocrity. He gives examples such as wikis (Wikipedia), blogs,
YouTube, search engines (Google) and many more. He explained that blogging has become an
obsession, such that a new blog is created every second of every minute of every hour of every
day. See: The Internet_ http://www.ajkeen.com/ www.youtube.com/watch?v=8lV3YRJKLq8

18

The nature of blogging according to Keen is centered on the personal lives of individuals which
exemplifies their amateurism. He affirmed this by stating that the New York Times reports that
50 percent of all bloggers blog for the sole purpose of reporting and sharing experiences about
their personal lives. The number of blogs has increased exponentially since then. Blogs have
become so dizzyingly infinite that they have undermined our sense of what is true and what is
false, what is real and what is imaginary. The emergence of social media sites such as Facebook,
MySpace and Twitter has led to the proliferation of amateurs. More interestingly, old media is
facing extinction due to the activities of individuals on the internet competing with mainstream
media for the audience attention. As traditional mainstream media is replaced by a personalized
one. Amateurs are creating contents through wikis (Wikipedia), blogs, YouTube and generating
advert revenue. Similarly, the profits of major mainstream media like newspaper companies
(New York Times Company) in the world have plummeted as a result of the technologies of
Web 2.0. Some of these companies faced financial challenges in such a manner that they at one
point laid off their workers. The rise of 3 YouTube has posed a major threat to the sales of
movies by Hollywood, thereby reducing their revenue. In the Cult of the Amateur, nonprofessionals have become experts, authors, producers, editors, and cultural gatekeepers as the
audience crave for more and more information. As the nature of audience interest determines the
type of content generated. www.youtube.com/watch?v=giuKW5ELWeE
CHAPTER ONE
The Great Seduction In this chapter, Keens analysis of the concept of Web 2.0 generally
describes him as a pessimist who sees nothing good in Internet revolution. He thrashed the
subject matter on the Cost of Democratization. He stated that because democratization, despite
its lofty idealization, is undermining truth, sourcing civic discourse, and belittling expertise,
experience and talent, it is threatening the very future of our cultural institutions. This he
referred to as the Great Seduction. He argues that those of us who want to know more about
the world, those of us who are the consumers of mainstream culture are being seduced by the
empty promise of the democratized media. For the real consequence of the is less culture, less
reliable news, and a chaos of useless information. Keen provided many instances to prove that
the internet rather to be a blessing to humanity, has negatively affected us culturally,
economically and intellectually. According to Keen, what the World Wide Web (WWW) is
19

giving us today is a superficial observations of the world around us rather than deep analysis,
shrill opinion rather than considered judgment. Before this, Keen had described how he left the
family of the internet geek to become an Unbeliever of the Internet cult due to his experience in
the FOO camp. Keen explained that the Web 2.0 revolution has left content creation to amateurs
who have no professional qualification to understand the nitty-gritty of news production, article
writing, and moviemaking. This according to him has in all ramifications relegated experts in
this field to the background. 4 However, Keens definition of whom an expert is vague. He sees
an expert as someone who possesses an academic qualification in a particular field or subject
matter. While according to the English dictionary, an expert is a person with extensive
knowledge or ability in a given subject. On the Web 2.0, there are a lot of the so called
amateur who possess extensive knowledge in what they are doing without having an academic
qualification. Are these people also amateur? This goes a long way to prove right Keens
subjective analysis of the Web 2.0. From Keens choice of word in this chapter, one is likely to
see a contradiction in his inability to present an argument and stick with it without diversion.
Keens comparison of the internet users with the Infinite monkey concept intensively reveals
the deliberate misrepresentation present in his book. Even when Keen tried to praise some of the
beneficiary features of the Web 2.0, he ended satisfying his unbeliever ego he has on the
coming of the Web 2.0. According to the Monkey Theorem, if you provide infinite monkeys
with infinite typewriters, some monkey somewhere will eventually create a masterpiece. But
Keen argued that instead of creating masterpieces, these internet amateurs are creating an
endless digital forest of mediocrity. This is also not true. One cannot deny the fact the Web 2.0
has led to more fact been available to users. Information is being quickly denied and confirmed
via Web 2.0. Day in day out, masterpieces is being created on the internet. Duo, Keen maybe
right in some of his argument, however his stance on the use of the product of Web 2.0 like Blog,
MySpace, Wikipedia, YouTube and his comparison of the traditional media to these Internet site
is somewhat out of place. According to him, the traditional media has professional gatekeepers
who edit content before publishing making the content generated a perfect example of artistic
presentation, while in the Web 2.0, everybody is a content producer, an editor and a publisher
producing propaganda as true information. Keene may have forgotten to tell us that the issue of
false information, rumour and propaganda started and spread wide with the use of these
traditional media. These media aided the spread of propaganda and false information without
20

giving the people the means to resist it. 5 However, even though Web 2.0 has its own share of
blame here, it has made lot of false information and propaganda to be busted than the traditional
media who has the so called expert as gatekeepers. Therefore, Keens qualification of the Web
2.0 as comprising amateur writers, amateur producers, amateur technicians, and amateur
audience further shows the author personal bias in the whole book who sees nothing good in the
internet revolution.
CHAPTER TWO- THE NOBLE AMATEUR
Keene started this chapter with the remark that every revolution on behalf of some seemingly
noble abstraction. And the Web 2.0 revolution is no different. The noble abstraction behind the
digital revolution is that of the noble amateur. He stated that the first time he heard the phrase
noble amateur was in 2004 at a breakfast with friend of OReilly. Keen, in quoting this friend,
stated that noble amateurs would democratize the dictatorship of expertise. He further
quoted him by expressing that the Web 2.0 was the most awesomely democratic consequence of
the digital revolution. Keen believes that the noble amateur is at the heart of Web 2.0s Cultural
Revolution and threatens to turn our intellectual traditions and institutions upside down. He
argued that in one sense, it is a digitalized version of Rousseaus noble savage, representing the
triumph of innocence over experience, of romanticism over the commonsense wisdom of the
Enlightenment. He defined amateur as a hobbyist, knowledgeable or otherwise, someone who
does not make a living from his or her field of interest, a layperson, lacking credentials, a
dabbler. He points out that on todays internet amateurism, rather than expertise, is celebrated.
Keen explained that the Oxford English Dictionary and the Encyclopaedia Britannica, two
trusted reference volumes upon which we have long relied for information, are being replaced by
Wikipedia and other user generated resources. Using a clear contrast, he stated that the
professional is being replaced by the amateur, the lexicographer by the layperson, the Harvard
professor by the unschooled populace. 6 Keen criticized that Wikipedia allows absolutely anyone
(amateurs) to add and edit entries on its Web site. He likens the concept of democracy to what is
obtainable in the contemporary Web 2.0 revolution where everybody is free to their views and
opinions. He further revealed that Wikipedias entry for the word amateur as virtuoso and a
connoisseur, which has been amended by other editors more than fifty times since June 2001.
He criticized Wikipedias editors, stating that they embrace and revel in the commonness of
21

their knowledge. And he ironically pointed out that on Wikipedia, two plus two sometimes
does equal five. In this chapter, Keen takes a full scale attack on Wikipedia. He provided
example Essjay an avid Wikipedia contributor who had edited thousands of Wikipedia articles
under a false identity. He claimed that he was a tenured professor of theology with four academic
degrees, as his profile claimed. On the contrary, he was a twenty-four year old high school
graduate from Kentucky named Ryan Jordan with no academic or professional credentials.
Keene made reference to the comments of Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia on the issue. He
quoted Wales in an interview with The New Yorker; I regard it as a pseudonym and I dont
really have a problem with it. Keene stated that Wales is himself a graduate school drop-out
from both the University of Alabama and Indiana University. He raises a critical question, how
does Wales know whos right? Keen sub-divided this chapter into three parts, they are namely: Citizen Journalists, The Liquid library and A Burrito in Every Hand.
Citizen Journalists
Keene points out that Citizen journalists are also members of the amateur. He argued this point
by stating that the amateur pundits, reporters, writers, commentators, and critics on the
blogosphere carry the banner of the noble amateur on Web 2.0. He emphasized that citizen
journalism is a euphemism for what is referred to as journalism by nonjournalists. Keene
makes a sharp contrast between professional journalists and citizen journalists. Where the
former, acquire their craft through education and firsthand experience of reporting and editing.
While the latter have no formal training or expertise, yet they routinely offer up opinion as fact,
rumour as reportage, and innuendo as information. 7 One leading champion of citizen
journalism, Dan Gillmor, author of the crusading We the Media: Grassroots Journalism by the
People, for the People, argues that the news should be a conversation among ordinary citizens
rather than a lecture that we are expected to blindly accept as truth. But the responsibility of a
journalist is to inform us, not to converse with us. (Keen, 2007:63) On the blogosphere,
publishing ones own journalism is free, effortless, and unencumbered by pesky ethical
restraints or bothersome editorial board. (Keen, 2007:47) Keene pointed out that despite the
contributions of citizen journalists in bringing news and information; they do not simply have the
resources to bring us reliable news. He argued that they lack not only expertise and training, but
connections and access to information.
22

Liquid Library
There is no doubt that the presence of the internet has contributed to the fall of intellectual
property rights. These rights include that of writers and publishers. This is being attributed to
Kelvin Kelly whose aim is focused at digitalizing all books into a single universal and open
source free hypertextlike a huge literary Wikipedia (Keen, 2007:57). Keene is against giving
the online amateurs the privilege of remixing, indexing, annotating, reassembling and analyzing
the Liquid Version (Online Version) of the book. He believes that if it is being altered, then it
will lose it taste, Is Crime and Punishment still Crime and Punishment if you remove the scene
where Raskolnikov murders the pawnbroker? (Keen, 2007:57). The Cult of Amateur according
to Keene threatens the world of design, fashion and advertising. Efforts that are being
appreciated with a huge among of money have folded due to the presence of amateurs.
Professionals no longer get royalties and rewards for their creative work and effort. However, the
amateurs who are not wise give out their creative efforts for a small penny. According to Keene
(2007:61), Companies have come to realize that not only is the amateur ad cheaper, but
consumers have come to see it as rawer, less polished, and somehow more "real" or true than an
ad prepared by a professional agency. Companies deceive them to design different things all in
the name of completion and end of using their creativity to sustain their businesses and earn
profit. 8 Keene argues that what the Web 2.0 gives us is an infinitely fragmented culture in
which we are hopelessly lost as to how to focus our attention and spend our limited time.
A Burrito in Every Hand
In this segment, Keen argued that the cult of the amateur threatens the world of design, fashion
and advertising. He stated that in an argument with design maven Joe Duffy, founder of Duffy
Designs in October 2006, they argued about the democratization of the art design, that anyone
can and should be a designer. He points out that companies like Wal-Mart have begun to
calculatingly play to our false assumptions about the realness of the amateur, getting free
advertising in the process. (Keene, 2007:61) Keen points out that amateurs are celebrated by
large companies as part of a marketing ploy, especially where amateur advertisements are used
by this companies as commercials. He gave example of companies like Nike, MasterCard,
Toyota, and LOreal that have run similar usergenerated marketing contests. Keene further
affirmed that a whole user-created advertising platform is even being pioneered by an Atlanta23

based company called ViTrue, enabling consumers to create, produce, and upload their own
video advertisements. And in relation to this, Keen wrote that one of ViTrues early customers is
the fast-growing restaurant franchise Moes Burrito in Every Hand is being produced by
amateur videographers (the creators of the best ad will Moes burritos for life). Keen revealed
that these campaigns manipulate our sensibility while undercutting the work of traditional
advertising agencies and the talented people they employ. He therefore inferred that we are
giving away our time and our creative output to corporations like Wal-Mart or MasterCard in
return for free burritos.
CHAPTER THREE- TRUTH AND LIES
This chapter categorically revealed some new revelation about the internet. It emphasizes the fact
that each day that passes, there are questions concerning the reliability of truth and the accuracy
of the information the masses get from the internet. It posits that in the digital worlds continuous
stream of unfiltered user-generated content, the journalistic ethical considerations regarding 9
truth, reliability, credibility among others becomes an illusion. This is largely due to the
democratization of the Web 2.0. This chapter is further sub-divided into nine (9) parts. They are:
Can you believe it?
In this segment, Keen revealed the nature of truth in the Web 2.0 style with well-researched
evidences and annotations such as the mock news cast on YouTube of popular German news
show in September 2006, which was a fraud. Another cited example was in November 2006
congressional elections in the United States YouTube in a campaign advertisement for Vernon
Robinson. The video was a distasteful attack on Brad Miller, Robinsons Democratic opponent.
When criticized for mud-slinging, Vernon Robinson claimed that the video had never been
approved for distribution. He claimed that someone out it on YouTube. On the contrary, these
scenarios were basically for political propaganda purpose. In Keens words, Is this a valid
excuse

for

defamatory

campaign

tactics

www.youtube.com/watch?v=dk7jCRb7tz8

and

blatant

distortion

of

truth?

See:

www.youtube.com/watch?v=ufHpNBfx6cM

According to Keen, the viral, editor-free nature of YouTube allows anyone from neo-Nazis, to
propagandists to campaign staffers to anonymously post deceptive, misleading, manipulative, or
out-of-context videos. Keene referred to this as the future of politics in a Web 2.0 world. He
24

emphasized that the supposed democratization medium of user-generated content (UGC) is


creating a tabloid-style gotcha culture, where one thoughtless throwaway remark overshadows
an entire platform, and lifelong political careers are destroyed by an off-the-cuff joke at the end
of a long campaign day. (Keen, 2007:67) 10 Furthermore, Keen stresses that when information
on politics and policy is so easily skewed or distorted, it is the electorates, who lose. From his
analysis on the use of YouTube as a medium for political propaganda, Keene points out; the
YouTubification of politics is a threat to civic culture. It infantilizes the political process,
silencing public discourse and leaving the future of the government up to thirty-second video
clips shot by camcorder-wielding amateur with political agendas. (Keen, 2007:68)
The truth about 9/11
In this part, a true life account of three would-be filmmakers in the United States was examined
by Keene in pointing out the use Web 2.0 technologies by amateurs to trash history about an
event that cost thousands of American lives, provoked a global backlash against Islam, and
instigated two wars. These filmmakers produced an eighty minutes movie titled Loose Change.
The documentary which was originally conceived as a fictional story that claimed the 9/11
terrorist attacks were organized and carried out by the Bush administration. The documentary
provided a different and distorted version of the events in the 9/11 terrorist attacks. According to
Keene, the movie, Loose Change rose to the number-one spot on Google Videos Top 100 by
May 2006, generating ten million viewing in its first year alone. He emphasized that thats tem
million people being fundamentally misled about one of the most cataclysmic events in America
history. This was in spite of the fact that the 9/11 Commission discredited the claims made by the
documentary in its final report. Keene explained that the report took two years to compile, cost
$15million and was written by two governors, four congressmen, three former White House 11
officials, and two special counsels. He therefore raises a fundamental mind-boggling question;
So whom do you trust? Three twenty-some-thing amateurs with no college education or a team
of experts that included Americas brightest and most experienced elected officials and
investigators? See Loose Change: https://freedocumentaries.org/documentary/loose-change-911-an-americancoup# watch-film
Scammers and Spammers

25

Scamming and spamming are not words that are alien to internet pundits in the world. However,
the revolution of Web 2.0 technologies has given a large and open playing field to online
fraudsters. Keene gave examples of events that have taken place such as the e-mails from the
Nigerian entrepreneur who promises a million-dollar return on a small investment in his oil
company, or from an unknown address claiming to be from your credit card company asking to
verify your card number. Keene also added that spammers seize control of innocent computer
networks, turning them into botnets by programming them to automatically send out spam that
will then appear to be from a trustworthy source. (Keene, 2007:70)
Sex, Lies and the Internet
Keene explored the concept of anonymity in the present-day internet of Web 2.0 where
individual internet users manipulate and frame facts for their personal benefits. He gave an
illustration of an event in September 2006 of a Seattle-based techie, James Fortuny who posted
an ad under an invented female identity in the casual encounters section of Craigslist, the
virtual marketplace for one-night stands and anonymous sex partners. According Keene,
Fortuny received 178 responses and proceeded to post them on his Web site including the
mens names, photos of them naked, even the identities of their wives. Fortuny referred to his
action as a petty prank, nonetheless, the reputations, careers, marriages and families of these
individuals were badly affected. In the words of Keene, this case underscores the dangers
inherent in an editorless medium where the only rules are that there are no rules. He added that
in irony, the very people who seek anonymity in the Web 2.0 were done in by it. Hence, the
Webs cherished anonymity can be a weapon as well as a shield. 12 According to Keene, that
fact is that rumours and lies disseminated online can tarnish reputations and ruin careers. In
contrasting online journalism with traditional media, Keene stated that antidefamation and libel
laws protect people from these kinds of vicious character assassinations. But due in parts to the
anonymity casualness of most Web postings, these laws have been hard to enforce in the digital
world. He further added that the owners of traditional newspapers and news networks are held
legally accountable for the statements of their reporters, anchors, and columnists, encouraging
them to uphold a certain standard of truth in the content they allow in their paper or their air.
Websites owners on the other hand, are not liable for what is posted by a third party. On the
contrary, Keene questioned the anonymity claims by some Websites owners on the premise of
26

protection of free speech. He buttressed that as long as the owners if Websites and blogs are
not held accountable, they have little encouragement or incentive to question or evaluate the
information they post. He provided a story on a lawsuit file by a Pennsylvania lawyer named
Todd Hollis against defamatory messages against him on a site called dontdatehimgirl.com. He
won the lawsuit in a bid to clear his name; however, his reputation was tainted due to the
publicity surrounding the suit. Keen pointed out the fact that with no one to step in and question
the veracity of information in the digital world, mistakes, lies, and rumours multiplying like
germs. In a contrast, he emphasized that before the Web 2.0, our collective intellectual history
has been one driven by the careful aggregation of truth, through professionally edited books and
references materials, newspapers, radio and television. But as all information becomes
digitalized and democratized, and is made universally and permanently available the media
record becomes an Internet on which misinformation never goes away. Talking about lies, Keene
stated that on the Web, rumours and misinformation from even a single source can spread with
frightening speed. He also wrote that it is impossible to stop the spread of misinformation, let
alone identify its source. Future readers often inherit and repeat this misinformation,
compounding the problem, creating a collective memory that is deeply flawed. 13 See: Andrew
Keene

The

Internet

is

not

the

answer

The

Next

Web.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=moLLHxxD0JM
Lonely Guys and Sock Puppet
Keene revealed that fake identities on the Internet have, in fact, become so widely adopted. They
have been given their own term: sock puppet, meaning the alter ego through which one speaks
on an online community or posts on a blog. Hence the sources of information are of unknown
origin and often lead to mistrust. He gave two examples of a couple of puppets called Mikekoshi
and sprezzatura. These names are the moniker or identities in which these individuals created
online. With these new identities, online bloggers are post without fear of the implications of
their contents. According to Keene, this is different in traditional news media, where there is no
such thing as anonymity. Articles and op-eds run with bylines, holding reporters and contributors
responsible for the content they create. Keene stated that Sock puppetry (both literal and
figurative) is rampant on YouTube as well. In fact, the lies on YouTube are so well told that they
have become detective stories in their own right. He provided a good example of YouTubes
27

lonelygirl15.

See:

Lonelygiel15:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qwklfIbSAgA

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jEQeZhe4aqM Keene writes that all this points to a


fundamental flaw with our user-driven content. He added that we are never sure if what we read
or see is what it seems. The user-run Internet not only allows, but encourages, the invention of
false identity.
The Blogosphere and the Bazaar
In the Blogosphere and the Bazaar, Keene highlights the arguments of some people that the Web
2.0 and the blogosphere represent a return to the vibrant democratic intellectual culture of the
eighteenth-century London coffeehouse. However, he emphasized that some of the notable
intellectuals of that era such as Samuel Johnson, Edmund Burke, and James Boswell did not hide
in anonymity while debating one another. 14 In further analysis, Keene writes that Trust is the
very foundation of any community. Every social contract theorist from Hobbes and Locke to
Jean-Jacques Rousseau, recognizes that there can be no peaceful political arrangement without a
common pact. And, as anthropologist Ernest Gellner argues in his classic Nations and
Nationalism, the core modern social contract is rooted in our common culture, in our language,
and in our shared assumptions about the world. In reference to Gellner, Keene writes that
Modern man is socialized by what the anthropologist calls a common "high culture." Our
community and cultural identity, Gellner says, come from newspapers and magazines, television,
books, and movies. Mainstream media provides us with common frames of reference, a common
conversation, and common values. Keene further cited Benedict Anderson, in Imagined
Communities which explained that modern communities are established through the telling of
common stories.
Library of Babel
Keene draws insight from a short essay written in 1939 by Jorge Luis Borges titled The Total
Library, where he predicted the horrors of the infinite library, one that has no center, no logic.
Instead, it is a chaos of information, composed of an indefinite and perhaps infinite number of
hexagonal galleries.(Keene, 2007:84) Keene affirmed that Borges The Total Library is
todays Internet, anonymous, incorrect, chaotic and overpowering. It is a place where there is no
concrete reality, no right and wrong, no governing moral code. It is a place where truth is
28

selective and constantly subject to change. The experience of surfing the Internet is akin to
wandering around the hexagonal galleries of Borges Library of Babel. He stressed that truth is
elusive and always one click or Web site away. Keen also wrote about the challenges of Web 2.0
technologies such as blogs which are constantly faked, hidden, or hacked by spammers. Hence,
they can become the tools of corporations, political propagandists, or identity thieves. (Keene,
2007:84) He revealed that newest phenomenon on the Web are splogs, a combination of spam
and blogs. Generated from software that allows users to create thousands of blogs per hour,
splogs 15 are fake blogs designed to mirror the real blogs in a sneaky ploy to trick advertisers
and search engines and drive traffic and thus pay-per-click revenue.(Keene, 2007:85) Keen
further stated that a first cousin of splogs are flogs. Floggers are bloggers who claim to be
independent but are actually in the pay of a sponsor, like the three Edelman PR staffers who, in
2006, attacked Wal-Mart critics while posing as grassroots Working Families for Wal-Mart
bloggers. (Keen, 2007:85)
TiVo and Tea Parties
Keen pointed out that before the Web 2.0, independent media content and paid advertising
existed separately, in parallel, and were easily distinguishable from each other. However, on the
Web 2.0, this is no longer obtainable. According to Keene, one reason for this is that new Web
2.0 technologies enable advertisers to transform what appears to be traditional content into
commercials. He provided an example of the controversial new technology called in-text
advertising, which allows companies like Microsoft and Target to sponsor keywords in
traditional editorial articles so that when a reader moves their cursor over an underlined word, a
pop-up ad appears. He emphasized that this blurring of lines between advertising and content is
partly due to our growing distrust in marketers and advertising. He referred to YouTube as a long
commercial break dressed up as democratized media.
The Wisdom of the Crowds
In the Web 2.0 world, the crowd has become the authority on what is true and what is true and
what is not. Search engines like Google, which run on algorithms that rank results according to
the number of previous searches, answer our search queries not with what most true or reliable,
but merely what is most popular. (Keen, 2007:92) Keen also argues that the search engine is a
29

quantitative historical record of previous requests. So all the search engine offers is a ranking
system that feeds back to us the wisdom of the crowd. He also wrote that In terms of links
clicked on and site visited, Google is an electronic mirror of ourselves 16 Keen argues that
Google search engine can be easily manipulated or corrupted with a term he refers to as Google
bombing which involves simply linking a large number of sites to a certain page, can raise the
ranking of any given site in Googles search results. Keen ironically pointed out that anyone
with a bit of tech savvy can rig the supposedly democratic Internet by repeatedly hyperlinking or
cross-linking certain pages that they want to show up first in Google searches. He affirmed that
these bombers are attempting to corrupt the collective wisdom stored in the Google
algorithm. From these points, it is obvious that Keen clearly goes against the democratization of
the Internet which is further boosted by the technologies of Web 2.0. to him, individual
knowledge have become a central basis for information sharing and knowledge evaluation
exhibited by Google Search engines. Keen points out that rather than user-generated content,
what Google bombing represents is another kind of UGC, that is user generated corruption.
Hence Google bombing has become a popular strategy for trying to sway popular opinion.
(Keen, 2007:94) He also revealed that social news or social bookmarking sites like Digg, Reddit,
Delicious, and Netscape which rely on the collective behaviour of other users to prioritize the
articles they display, also limit our access to fair and balanced information. He added that this
sites track the reading habits of their users and make recommendations based on aggregated
preferences of the entire community. Keen in citing The Wall Street Journals research reveals
that these sites reflect the preference of the few rather that the wisdom of the masses. (Keen,
2007:94) Keen stressed that when our individual intentions are left to the wisdom of the crowd,
our access to information becomes narrowed, and as a result, our view of the world and our
perception of truth becomes dangerously distorted. He concluded, with Web 2.0, the madness is
about the 17 crowd falling in love with itself. See: www.youtube.com/watch?v=eqskO0dr5CY
CHAPTER FOUR- THE DAY THE MUSIC DIED (SIDE A)
Keen shifts his focus to the effects of the digital revolution on the Music industry. He gives
example of Tower Records (originally opened in April 1968), an independent music store that
closed down owing to this reason. Keene emphasized that between 2003 and 2006, 800
independent music stores closed down for good. He stated that the independent record store is
30

becoming an endangered speciesironically, the one record store that seems to be thriving today
is the three-dimensional Sony BMG store on SecondLife.com, where all virtual citizens seek to
re-create the vitality of a real-life record store. (Keene, 2007:100) Keen argued that the sad
truth is that with the demise of the physical record store, we may have less musical choice, fewer
labels, and the emergence of an oligarchic digital retail economy dominated by Amazon.com,
iTunes, and MySpace. This may partly be true, but not entirely, in the sense that Keenes
argument comes from an observation during a period when Web 2.0 technologies was having its
minimal effects in the music industry. Today, despite the challenges of digital piracy, more
record labels and sprouting up and their financial gains have been rewarding. Most artistes use
iTunes and in selling their record albums online to internet users.
Toy at the Bottom of the Cornflakes Box
Keen quoted Gerd Leonhard a music futurist where he expressed that Music will be a utility like
water,because right now only two out of ten people are buying the music they are listening to.
Keene contrasted Leonhard assumption to a joint 2006 report by European (IFPI) and American
(RIAA) researchers, where he argued that forty songs are actually downloaded for every legal
music downloaded. According to Keene, that adds up to 20 billion songs illegally downloaded
in 2005 compared to a lead digital market of 500 million tracks, resulting in a paltry $1.1 billion
in revenue. (Keen, 2007:106) Keen raised a critical question regarding the future of music, where
wrote; As a free come-on to other stuff? Rather than a utility like electricity or water, music in
the Web 2.0 revolution may become equivalent to the plastic toy found at the bottom of the
cornflakes box. 18 Keen further revealed that Digital piracy and illegal file-sharing from service
like BitTorrent, eDonkey, DirectConnect, Gnutella, LimeWire, and SoulSeek have become the
central economic reality in the record business. According to him, (Keene, 2007:107-108) this is
why there are now 25 percent fewer music stores in America than there were in 2003it is why
in the first half of 2006, shipments of CDs and other physical music formats in America were
down 15.7 percent from the first half of 2005. Keen also argues that one problem faced by
music artistes is that even strong Internet visibility and popularity dont necessarily generate
money. He gave an illustration with the band The Scene Aesthetic, a rock band which have had
a successful online presence on MySpace and YouTube with no financial returns. Keene
reemphasized Leonhards claim that music is as popular now as its ever been. But he
31

criticized him by stating that internet fame doesnt equal dollars. He stated that the sheer
volume of music online, and the ease with which it can be downloaded for free is snuffing out
the careers of budding artists like The Scene Aesthetic. With so many songs available for free, or
for 99 cents from iTunes why would anyone pay $15 to $20 for a CD? As a consumer, why
buy an album when you can cherry-pick the one or two songs you really want? Keene further
asked the question With fewer and fewer people buying the physical albums, where is the
money for the record industry and the recording stars? (Keen, 2007:111) See the Scene
Aesthetics: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YoFsshDfE0k In nutshell, Keens stance may
partly be true, but not entirely, in the sense that his argument comes from an observation during a
period when Web 2.0 technologies was having its initial effects in the music industry. Today,
despite the challenges of digital piracy, more record labels and sprouting up and their financial
gains have been rewarding. Most artistes use iTunes and in selling their record singles and
albums online to internet users.

CHAPTER FIVE- THE DAY THE MUSIC DIED [SIDE B]


This chapter amongst others centres on the arguments of Keen on how Web 2.0 has made many
authors of creative works and some media station/companies to go bankrupt and end up
downsizing their workers and reducing the quality of their productions as a result high rate of
digital piracy and un-functioning nature of intellectual property law which was powered 19
tremendously by technology of Web 2.0 technology. He further discusses this chapter under four
sub-headings: Hollywood in Crisis, When the Ink Bleeds Red, Where is the Money? and
God is dead. According to Keen on the Web 2.0, digital piracy is becoming the norm.
Similarly, Keen quoted Kevin Kelly on the influence of the Web 2.0 in our today activities the
real magic will come as each page in each book is cross linked, clustered, cited, extracted,
indexed, analyzed, annotated, remixed, reassembled and woven deeper into the culture than ever
before (Keen, 2007:116). This is the case and manifest in online environment where many
creative works of arts are accessed even downloaded by user without paying any nothing and
zero acknowledgements to the right or original authors. In extension, this act has led many
authors to seize from production due to financial constraints and some still in the calling have
reduced the qualities of the work un-like before.
32

Hollywood in Crisis
Keene also observed as former member of Silicon Valley that the internet is a huge moral
hazard for people in general and it equally a huge economic hazard for the serous provider of the
content. Yes of course, for those who pirate authors works on the internet is moral to them
while for those active producers of contents or works that are pirated, internet is of great
economic hazard to them. Meanwhile, Keene noted in his argument that the digital movies
piracy which involve free movies download and the growing popularity of amateur video site
like YouTube and veon-video are coursing a decline in box-office revenue and sole of DVD.
Keen is very right base on this observation this is because since the revolution of Web 2.0 on
how we receive media products, many conventional media companies have lost their advertising
revenue to online media and even the sale revenues have continue to be dwindling on a daily
basis. This is because, the conventional customers and advertisers have enrolled into online
world to place advert and receive the media contents with ease and in varieties. To support this
observation, Keene reported some research findings on the influence of Web 2.0 on the
conventional media. Thus, according to research finding of Motion Picture Association of
America (MPAA) in 2006 as reported by Keen, 90% of revenue of movies companies have been
20 pirated by digital revolution which led many of this companies to downsizing their staffs and
reducing the rate of production. (Keen, 2007:118-119) In the same vein, Keen emphasized that
the worst is still coming since the technology still makes it possible and easier to download
movies from the internet. Of course more dangers and destructions are yet to come since
individuals can still seat down in his or her bed room and download with ease over 1millon of
movie free from internet and 1.5 million of music within a week without zero payment and
acknowledgement of the original authors of the works. Furthermore, according to Keen there
was a time, not so long when if we wanted to watch TV, we do turn on our TV sets. Now, we do
turn on our computer, flip open our cell phone, switch on our TiVos or plug into video iPod.
Exactly, this is because Web 2.0 revolution has make us to forget our conventional way of
receiving factual information about our society which are more valuable and cherish-able. But
now we value online media pass our conventional media of information. More so, Keen noted
that as the circulation continues to drop, advertisers are shifting their dollars to an online
environment where they can reach a large and more targeted audience. But keen forget at point
that, not all these advertiser like the services of online media that is why they still patronizing the
33

conventional media for advertisement placement couple with the fact that not all audiences of
media have metamorphosed into online world we take note.
Where is the Money?
Keen raised an important observation when he said that the primary aim of Web 2.0 companies
like Google, YouTube and many others is in advertising dollars not in establishing a rich culture
legacy which is the main objective of conventional media (Keen, 2007:135). Of course Keen is
right because, rather than leaning more about our cultural value, Web 2.0 companies are busy
giving us immoral cultural contents and encourage cyber crimes amongst the participant that are
in contrary to our cultural value in order to get more dollars and naira from advertisers instead of
promoting and attaching more values to our cultural value like conventional media used to do
before this revolution we should think about it. Furthering on this point Keen noted that Google
as a part of Web 2.0 companies is a parasite; it creates no content of its own. It sole
accomplishment is having figured out an algorithm that links pre-existing content to other pre21
existing content on the internet and charging advertisers each time one of those links is clicked.
Intern of value creation three I nothing there a part from its links. Obviously with regard to
activities that take place in online environment Keen is very critical and right about this as a
former member and observer of Silicon Valley activities and this is not only the case in the
western world rather is an issue in third world nations like Nigeria. In a nutshell, Keen is really
right based on his criticism leveled on Web 2.0 technology, which has the main course of digital
piracy, inactive nature of intellectual property and passive nature of many conventional media
with the regard to production of conventional content for their conventional audience.
CHAPTER SIX MORAL DISORDER
This chapter is further sub-divided into five parts; When Yours is Mine, Betting the House,
Sex is everywhere, Online addiction and Our second Lives Keene alluded to the JudeoChristian ethic of respecting others' property that has been central to our society since the
country's founding is being tossed into the delete file of our desktop computers. The pasting,
remixing, mashing, borrowing, copying, the stealing of intellectual property has become the
single most pervasive activity on the Internet. (Keen, 2007:142) And it is reshaping and
distorting our values and our very culture. The breadth of today's mass kleptocracy is mind34

boggling. Keene gives example about cases of illegal downloading of music and movies which
has become a norm in society of the amateur. He cited the case of Brianna LaHara who was a
filed a lawsuit in 2003 for downloading online music copying and sharing it illegally among her
friends. According to the story, LaHara was ignorant of the fact that record companies where
running at a loss owing to act of multiple distribution of online songs. Keene considers this as
one of the mistakes of the ignorant amateur. Keen further argued that Web 2.0 technology is
confusing the very concept of ownership, creating a generation of plagiarists and copyright
thieves with little respect for intellectual property. He also stated that they are also stealing
articles, photographs, letters, research, videos, jingles, characters, and just about anything else
that can be digitized and copied electronically. 22 Keen cited a study conducted in June 2005 by
the Centre for Academic Integrity (CAI) of 50,000 undergraduates revealed that 70 percent of
college students admitted to engaging in some form of cheating; worse still, 77 percent of college
students didnt think that Internet plagiarism was a serious issue. Keen inferred that this
disturbing finding gets a grave problem in terms of Internet and Culture. Keen also revealed that
even the clergy are turning into plagiarists with sites like sermoncentral.com, sermonspice.com
and desperatepreacher.com offering easily downloadable transcripts of sermons. Keene
ironically highlights the moral disorder brought by Web 2.0 revolution, where he stated that its
just so easy to use other people\s creative efforts; even our priests, whom we expect to be
paragons of virtue, are doing it. Keen criticized Stanford University law professor, Lawrence
Lessig who argued that legal sharing and reuse of intellectual property is a social benefit. He
countered by stating that Lessig wants to replace what he calls our Read-Only Internet with a
Read-Write Internet, where we can remix and mashup all content indiscriminately. The
Web 2.0 culture grew up celebrating file sharing; and now it has provided, on a mass scale, the
tools that make cheating and stealing so much easier and so much more tempting. (Keene,
2007:145) On Betting the House, Keene thrashes Internet gambling which has led to a massive
addiction with the development of sites like PartGaming, SportingBet, 888.com. BetonSports
and Bodog.com. He stated that it has quickly become a national disease. He gave an example of
Hogan in 2005, who robbed Allentown Wachovia Bank of $60 billion that was bet on online
poker alone. Keen stressed that Online gambling is prohibited in the United States under the
1961 Federal Wire Act. Yet, until the summer of 2006, not a single site had ever been indicted
and the industry thrived, generating around $6 billion of revenue in America in 2005. Businesses
35

like BetonSports, 888.com, SportingBet, and PartyGaming grew up overnight, basing their
computer servers offshore in tax-free Costa Rica, Gibraltar, Antigua, and the Channel Islands,
where they were largely ignored by American law enforcement.
On Sex is Everywhere, Keene argued that the ways in which Web 2.0 is compromising our
morals and our values is most evident in the realm of pornography. In a report by Internet Filter
Review between 1998 and 2003, the amount of internet pornography mushroomed 1,800 percent
from 14 million to 260 million pages. (Keene, 2007:154-155) Keen explained that the Web 2.0
twist to this explosion of addictive smut is the rise in usergenerated pornography. He revealed
that amateur porn sites that subsist on user-generated contents like voyeur-web, or Pornotube, a
rip-off of YouTube that posts thousands of new amateur pornographic videos weekly, are the
most highly trafficked sites on the Web. He further argued that the ubiquitous sex on the
Internet and the hypersexual content of online social-networking sites is accelerating kids sexual
and social development in very dangerous ways. He provided a mind provoking proof by citing
an Interview by the online sex magazine Nerve, who published an interview with a thirteen year
old eighth-grade girl named Z about Internet pornography. Her replies were shocking as they
were also clear examples of the dangers of the Web 2.0 revolution. Keen further argued on the
level of Internet addiction which have been boosted by social networking sites. From Keens
viewpoint, it can be observed that the Internet has done a great harm to our preserved and highly
revered culture. Consequently, promoting moral decadence and a gradual decline in societal
values as a result of the Web 2.0 revolution.
CHAPTER SEVEN 1984 (VERSION 2.0)
In this chapter, Keen tell a story an AOL user #711391 who exposes her life details on the
AOLs Search engine. It was the story of a woman who was struggling to maintain her sanity in
the face of despair. According to Keene, she opened her heart to Web 2.0 technology, where she
fed 2,393 personal questions about herself between March and May into the Search engine.
Keene pointed out that little did AOL user #711391 know that she would become one of the
first casualties of a digital surveillance culture in which our deepest fears and most intimate
emotions can be broadcast, without our knowledge or permission, to the world. Keen explained
that the online magazine slate describe the release of her entries as a flagrant invasion of
fundamental individual rights. It was the magazine claimed, Orwellian. He termed 24 this as
36

Welcome to 1984, version 2.0. Keen revealed that our new Orwellian age got its public
screening on the evening of Sunday, August, 2006, when AOL leaked the search data of 658,000
people (including the AOL user #711391). Keen explains that this was a clear intrusion into
individual privacy perpetrated by the Web 2.0 revolution. He also provided another example of
the a breach in the database of MSNBC in February 2005. This led to the exposure of over
163,000 financial records and resulted in close to 800 cases of identity theft. Keene provided
more examples Second Life Database, Department of Veteran Affairs, and MasterCard which at
one point mistakenly leaked the details of their customers or were hacked by fraudsters. Keen
further argues that what is in many ways more shocking than the amount of stolen information
on the Web is the amount of private information traded legally on the Internet each day. He
stated that in the Web 2.0 world, where each and every one of these searches is readily available
to corporations or government agencies, the right to privacy is becoming antiquated notion.
(Keen, 2007:173) Keen, in his argument, reveals how Google and AOL acquire detailed
information from its users. He wrote; through the innocently named cookies-tiny parcels of data
embedded in our Internet browser that establish a unique ID number on our hard disk and enable
Web sites to collect precise records of everything we do online. He stated that these cookies
transform our habits into data. They are goldminers for marketers and advertisers. They record
our site preferences, they remember our credit card information, they store, what we put into our
electronic shopping carts, and they note which banner advertisements we click on. Commenting
on this, Keen stated that The age of surveillance is not just being imposed from above by the
aggregators of data. He inferred that it is also being driven from below by our selfbroadcasting
obsession. He added that Web 2.0s infatuation with user-generate content is a data miners
dream. The more we reveal about ourselves on our MySpace page, in our YouTube videos, on
our blog, or on the blogs of others, the more vulnerable we become to snoops, blackmailers,
voyeurs, and gossips. 25 He also revealed that, the Central Intelligence Agency CIA, is now
investing in Web 2.0 technology, with what he referred to as Spy-blogging which involves the
spooks sharing one anothers research, aerial photographs, and secret videos. Keen also admitted
that the confessional nature of user-generated culture is resulting in a cultural explosion of
personal, sexual, and political self-revelation. According to him, this democratized, usergenerated media, where everyone gets to spy on everyone else, represents the collective
implosion of our privacy rights. (Keene, 2007:176-177) He also commented about on the next
37

Web 3.0 which according to New York Times which is likely driven by intelligent software
that can use information from the Web to intuit our future decisions and intentions. According to
Keene, The ultimate search engine would understand everything in the world. It would
understand everything that you asked it and give you back the exact right thing instantly. In a
nutshell, Keen in this chapter highlights the exposure of peoples privacy by search engines,
online Web sites and the vulnerability that user-generated contents create in the Web 2.0 world.
CHAPTER EIGHT SOLUTIONS
Keen starts this chapter with a series of questions which requires carefully, planned answers
backed by strategically decisive actions. He pushes forth his argument in the Cult of the Amateur
by seeking ways to proffer solutions to the identified challenges created by the Web 2.0
revolution and its developing technologies such as Wikipedia, the blogosphere, YouTube,
MySpace and so many others. According to Keen, How can we channel the Web 2.0 revolution
constructively, so that it enriches rather than undermine our economy, culture, and values? What
can we do to ensure that our most vibrant traditions, celebrating knowledge and expertise,
fostering creative achievement, sustaining and supporting a reliable and prosperous information
economyarent swept away by the tsunami of the cult of the amateur? Keen affirmed that he
is neither antitechnology nor antiprogress. He explained the relevance of Digital technology,
which gives us the means to interact globally and share knowledge in unprecedented ways. 26
He stated that Wales and Sanger created Nupedia in 2001 they founded Wikipedia. Kevin Kelly
told Silicon Valleys TED Conference in February 2005, you can delay technology, but you
cant stop it. He argues that Web 2.0 participatory media is reshaping our intellectual, political
and

commercial

landscape.

See

Ted

Conference

2005:

https://www.ted.com/talks/kevin_kelly_on_how_technology_evolves?language=en# In the use


of Web 2.0, Keen explained that our challenge, is to protect the legacy of our mainstream media
and two hundred years of copyright protections within the content of twentyfirst century digital
technology. Our goal should be to preserve our culture and our values, while enjoying the
benefits of todays internet capabilities. We need to find a way to balance the best of the digital
future Sergei Brin and Larry owns Google, Steve Chen and Chad Hurley at YouTube. (Keen,
2007:185) In discussing the solutions to the challenges posed by Web 2.0 revolution, Keene

38

focused on three focal points, namely; Citizendium, Crime and Punishment and Bringing it
All Home.
Citizendium
Keen explained that Sanger, one of the pioneers of Nupedia and later Wikipedia alongside
Jimmy Wales was responsible for checking amateurs who posted and reposted thousands of
entries a day. After two years he had enough of anonymous anarchist like The Cunctatator on
Wikipedia control and quality. The lesson Sanger learnt was that an open-source Encyclopaedia
like Wikipedia could only function effectively if it reserved some authority to screen and edit its
anonymous contributions. Sanger also understood and drew from his experience at Wikipedia,
that the democratization of information can quickly degenerate into an intellectually corrosive
radical egalitarianism. He learned that fully democratic open-source networks inevitably get 27
corrupted by loonies. Hence, the Knowledge of the expert does trump the collective wisdom of
amateurs. (Keen, 2007:186) According to Keen, Sanger realized a problem and how to
implement it, which is not just its technology so he went away on how to incorporate the voice
and authority of experts with the user-generated content. And he returned with a solution that
incorporates the best of old and new media, which he called Citizendium, which was launched in
September 2006, he describes it as an experimental new wikiproject that combines public
participation with gentle expert guidance. According to Keene, Citizendium is an attempt to
fuse the strengths of a trusted resource like the Encyclopaedia Britannica with the participatory
energy of Wikipedia. On Citizendium, experts in specific subjects have the power to review,
approve, and settle disputes about articles within their intellectual specialty. Keen expressed
that What is so refreshing about Citizendium is that it acknowledges the fact that some people
know more about certain things that othersIf in Web 2.0 pioneer like Larry Sanger can come
to recognize this, maybe there is hope after all for the user-generated Web 2.0. See:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q1p6zoi 0y40-citizendium Citizendium is a platform that
deals with websites that allows both a professional and online users to sell any kind of products
which can enable an online audience to subscribe. Keen further explained that Larry Sanger is
not the only Web 2.0 pioneer who has come to his senses about the inferiority of amateur
content. He cited other pioneers such as Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis, the founders of the
original file-sharing service Kazaa and online telephony company Skype. In 2007 the former
39

Macromedia Chief Technology Officer Jeremy Allaire, had raised $60 million in venture capital.
Also YouTube, were designed to enable professional creators of video content to deliver highquality interactive content to both the personal computer and the television. This development
gave Keen hope that Web 2.0 technologies can be used to empower rather than overshadow the
authority of the expert that the digital revolution might usher in an age in which the authority of
the expert is strengthened. He gave an example of a site called iAmplify. According to Keen, this
site allows professionals to sell audio or video downloads that offer instruction and expertise.
(Keene, 2007:189) 28 Keen intelligibly asks the question; so is the future of iAmplify or
MySpace? Is YouTube or Joost? Wikipedia or Citizendium? The question is ideological rather
than technologicalWe can and must resist the siren song of the noble amateur and use Web 2.0
to put trust in our experts again.
Crime and punishment
Keen commenting on this aspect states, this is where morality comes in; Reynolds is looking at
how the society can behave in the Wild West culture of Web 2.0 revolution?" He is of the
opinion that users of online products are easily seduced, corrupted and led astray. In other words,
we need rules and regulations to help control our behaviour online, just as we need traffic laws to
regulate how we drive in order to protect everyone from accidents. Online gambling is prohibited
in the United States under the 1961 Federal Wire Act, which forbids the use of wire
communication (including the internet), some online gamblers have been arrested such as David
Carrutuers at DFW Airport, King Pin, Peter Dicks, the chairman of SportingBet, a few months
later, dealt a swift blow to the illegal online betting business. With its CEO sitting in a Dallas
courtroom in his prison issued orange jumpsuit and facing a twenty-twocourt criminal
indictments. (Keen, 2007:197) On September 30, 2006, congress passed the unlawful Internet
gambling enforcement act, which created new criminal penalties for banks and credit card
companies that process payments to online gambling companies. And in January 2007,
indictments were handed down to four major investment firms for underwriting the initial public
offering of online gambling operation. The number of online casinos has been reduced.
According to the Economist Magazine, the 2006 legislation proved enough to cripple an industry
already reeling from the earlier arrests (Keen, 2007:197) Keen revealed that gambling is not the
only internet activity that would benefit from more regulation. I feel we need to same
40

uncompromising crackdown online fraud, identity theft, and led stealing to intellectual property.
29 In February 2006, Massachusetts congressman EDMarkey introduced a bill requiring
searchengine companies to delete any information about visitors that is not required for
legitimate business purposes. This bill will go a long way to ensuring that our children are
protected from harmful content, at least while on school grounds.
Bringing it All Home
Keen stated that todays Web 2.0 world, children are spending more time online and it depends
on parents whether to allow it or not. It is important to put their computer in the family room,
rather than allowing them go online in the privacy of their bedrooms. This will help you to
monitor the amount of time spend at MySpace and other sites that can monopolize their time at
the expense of homework, exercise or interacting with friend in the real world. (Keen, 2007:202)
Therefore, the help of products like Net Nanny, Cyber sitter and Smart Alex, (Keen, 2007:203)
for example, parents can program their childs internet browser to block specific sites or images,
restrict chat and instant messaging to a safe list of friends, limit time online, control
downloads and block private information like phone numbers and addresses. Keene emphasized
that lets not be remembered for replacing movies, music and books with you! Instead lets use
technology in a way that encourages innovation while preserving professional standards of truth,
decency, and creativity. Thats our moral obligation because its our debt to both the past and the
future.

41

GROUP FOUR (4)


The internet is akin to a global wild, wild West (www), with your knowledge of this hostile
and seemingly uncontrolled environment, factually discuss the need or otherwise of ethical
considerations to the field of online journalism.
INTRODUCTION
The internet and the World Wide Web (WWW) have been a significant part of online journalism
since at least 1994. Hall (2001:2) (as cited in Rodin) notes that Reuters routinely serves 2,700
pages of data every second of every day to a potential market of over 200 million regular Web
users. Rudin et al assert that news and information is one of the main reasons people use the
Internet, with one survey showing that 40 per cent used the medium to give them more
background on a story than had been available through press or broadcasting. The rate of spread
of Internet in Africa is equally unprecedented. The Internet doubled in size in 1994 and has done
so every year since 1988 and the number of computers connected to the Internet in Africa for
example jumped by 36% from July 1988 to January 1999 (Kojo, B et al 2003). Evidently,
Internet is the fastest growing communications medium ever. Millions of people are finding their
working lives and increasingly their recreation, changed beyond all recognition. The Internet or
simply the Net as it is often called, stands for interconnected network of networks on a global
scale. It makes it possible for computers all over the world to, send and receive messages
(Richard, 2003). According to William, B. (2000), it is an internet-work of several hosts and
their networks together to form a larger network of global magnitude. It is therefore a global
collection of computers and networks that connects millions of peoples, organizations, military,
and government to a wide range of information resources through a common protocol to
communicate among themselves. Alberto (2000) defines the Internet as a worldwide, publicly
accessible series of interconnected computer networks that transmit data by packet switching
using the standard Internet Protocol (IP). It is a "network of networks" that consists of millions
of smaller domestic, academic, business, and government networks, which together carry various
information and services, such as electronic mail, online chat, file transfer, and the interlinked
Web pages and other documents of the World Wide Web. Alberto (2000) succinctly put, Internet
could be described by four major characteristics. They are: 1. Interactivity, that is, ICTs effective
two way communication. 2. Permanent availability, the new ICTs are available 24 hours a day.
42

3. Global reach; bridging the geographic distances. 4. Reduced costs for many; relative costs of
communication have shrunk to a fraction of previous values. DiMaggio, Hargittai, Neuman &
Robinson (2001, pp.307-336) describe the Internet thus: Internet can be a telephone: literally, or
through e-mail, chat rooms, and other forms of real-time communication between individuals. It
can serve as a library: Specialized websites narrowcast information to users interested enough
to use search engines to find them. It can act as a soap box: for individuals expressing themselves
toe-lists and discussion forums. Or it can operate as a conventional mass medium: Internet
service providers like AOL and services like RAM media let providers broadcast information to
large users simultaneously. Kojo, Asiedu and Lu, Song Feng (2003, P 202) jointly describes
Internet thus:
The Internet or Net; is nothing more than a means of transport for digitalized information. But
it makes radically new patterns of human communication possible through its speed of transport
and the fact that once a link is established it becomes very cheap to send information to one
person or to a hundred. The Internet is more of a concept than a thing. It is best thought of as a
new means of transport for information - the tracks over which actual information services
run. In the same way, railways made regional and national newspapers possible; the arrival of
the Internet makes new information service possible. The Internet allows users to transcend time,
distance and old technology cost constraints. They can form working groups or visual clubs
with people who share their interests, regardless of where they live. The Internet has positioned
itself as a formidable resource for business Information in developing countries. It has opened up
peoples consciousness to the modern day technique of storing data in different locations and in
different formats. Businesses, governments and NGOs are increasingly using the Internet to
recruit personnel, save time and expense. With its worldwide scope and role, the Internet permits
significant insights into overall market trends and competitive measures. The use of electronic
mail minimizes the cost of employing staff, running advertisements, printing and postage costs.
Development experts have posited that the Internet would undoubtedly mean better educated and
better informed people who in turn are more likely to successfully battle poverty and increase
productivity so as to have improved economies. Besides the above mentioned benefits, Internet
can equally be beneficial to governments. It can help government agencies and private
organizations to communicate with the public, with businesses and with one another. The
43

anytime, anywhere character of the Internet allows information and services from the
government, job recruiters/employers to be more available to more people and business with
greater convenience and lower cost to customers. The first electronic digital computer was
developed during World War II by the British to break the Germans secret code. The first fullservice electronic computer, introduced in 1946 was ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator
and Calculator), introduced by scientist John Mauchly and John Presper Eckert of the Moore
school of Electrical Engineering at the University of Pennsylvania. The commercial computers
were introduced by the efforts of IBM. The Internet is in part the product of the militarys desire
to maintain US defenses after a nuclear attack.
It came as a result of the 1957 Soviet Union launch of sputnik, earths first human constructed
satellite, which disputed the supremacy of the US in science and technology. The US research
team found answer in decentralization as the key to enabling communication to continue no
matter where an attack occurred, and the solution was a network of computer networks- the
Internet. In 1969, Arpanet went online, and became fully operational and reliable within one
year. Other development soon followed. In 1972, Ray Tomlinson created the first e-mail
programme and gave us the ubiquitous. The term Internet was coined in 1974 by Stanford
Universitys Vinton Cerf and Robert Katin of the U.S. military. In 1979, Steve Bellovin, a
graduate student of the University of North Carolina, created Usenet and IBM crested BITNET.
With the development of personal or microcomputers, the Internet became accessible to millions
of non- institutional users. Its capabilities include e-mail, mailing list, Usenet, FTP and World
Wide Web (WWW).
ORIGIN OF ETHICS
Generally, the concept of ethics has a very long history, dating back perhaps to the beginning of
human existence. Philosophers believed that the concept of morality must have existed in a more
or less unreflective form, probably closely associated with myth, religion and taboo from the
time human beings began to live in groups. The concept of ethics must have being in existence in
more primitive forms long before it came to be documented in written words. There is however,
a measure of uncertainty about the precise origin of this first book. Journalistic ethics is however
a modern philosophy. The earliest signs of mass communication ethics appeared at the turn of
the twentieth century as a reaction against the excesses of the extreme freedom of the libertarian
44

theory of the press. The libertarian theory called for complete press freedom on the part of the
Journalist. The theory advocated that there should be no pre- censorship and post-censorship of
the press as human beings are rational beings. The press men grossly abused this press freedom
as they began to embark on negative journalistic practices like, yellow journalism, junk
journalism, sensationalism, invasion of privacy, character assassination etc. Yaroson and
Asemah (2008:64), cited in Asemah (2011) put it that, as early as the late nineteenth century,
critics began to identify flaws in the libertarian theory. The press was evolving in a manner that
fell short of the idealistic libertarian goals. And by the twentieth century, the voices for change
were loud. The negative practices by journalists encouraged by complete press freedom
brought about the social responsibility theory which calls for responsibility on the part of the
journalist in the course of his duty. The social responsibility theory states that "freedom carries
concomitant responsibility". Thus, by the twentieth century, the time was ripe for the emergence
of a theory of a free but, responsible press. This brought into existence the social responsibility
theory of the press characterized by the rise of professional journalistic associations with codes
of ethics designed to encourage responsible behaviour by their members. The social
responsibility theory reconciles the freedom enjoyed by the journalist with his obligations to the
society. It places emphasis on persons and media institutions that operate the media. McQuail
(1987), cited in Asemah (2011) identifies some of the principles as:
Certain obligations to society should be accepted and fulfilled by the press. - These obligations
are mainly to be fulfilled through setting high professional standards of truth, accuracy,
objectivity, balance and informativeness. - In the discharge of their duties, the media should be
self-regulatory within the frame work of law and established institutions. - The society and
public have a right to expect high standards of performance from the media and intervention can
be justified to secure public good since journalist should be accountable to the society. To
maintain high standards, the theory holds that the press must be controlled either by itself or by
the government. Frankena and Granrose cited in Okunna (1995:1), say that the word ethics
stands for a branch of morality and its problems. Ethics as moral philosophy is therefore, that
branch of knowledge which is concerned with the standards of good and bad conduct in a society
using societal norms as a basis for the evaluation of human conduct or behaviour. Ethics
therefore, is the moral philosophy or science which determines what is right or wrong in a social
context. It is a moral rule or principle of behaviour for deciding what is right and wrong.
45

Thus, Merrill cited in Nwodu (2006: 135), cited in Asemah (2011), defines ethics as a normative
science of conduct which stipulates guidelines, rules, principles and codes that are designed to
lead individual to make moral decisions. From the foregoing, it can be seen that ethics is a matter
of morality. Ethics can be described as the systematic study of the principles and methods for
distinguishing right from wrong and good from bad. Ethics is a moral concept. The word ethics
is of the Greek origin "ethos" which means character while the word "morals" comes from the
Latin word "moralis" which means custom or manner (Asemah, 2011). Tschudin cited in
Okunna (1995:1) says that ethics and morals mean custom, that is, a very fundamental way of
doing things or of conduct which are not only customary, but also right. Thus, in the context of
ethics, the acceptance of or otherwise of human attitudes and behaviours, actions and inactions
and overall conduct can be based on relative moral uprightness or otherwise, of such conduct.
Thus, when we speak of people as moral or ethical, we usually mean that they are good people
and when we speak of them as immoral or unethical, we mean that they are bad people. This
agrees with Nwodu (2006: 135) who says that a given action can be said to be ethically right or
wrong, good or bad, responsible or irresponsible, logical or illogical, socially acceptable or
unacceptable and moral or immoral. Asemah (2011) identified some of the theories of ethics,
includes: Deontological Theory: This theory simply assumes that for an action to be judged right
or wrong, it should not be hinged on the consequence, rather, it should be based on the intension
behind the action. Deontology or non-consequentialism defines right action- considering the
intrinsic qualities of an action. Deon means, what ought to be done. For the deontologists, certain
things like virtues are intrinsically good and ought to be sought after. The rightness or wrongness
of actions should depend on the intrinsic quality and not the consequence. Thus, once an online
journalist believes that the action he is taking is right, he should not consider what the outcome
will turn out to be. He is to appraise the motive behind an action, rather than the consequence.
Absolutist Theory: The ethical absolutist believes that there is one universal and eternal code that
basically applies to everyone in all ages. The change in opinions, traditions and conditions makes
no difference. This implies that whether a journalist finds himself in the north, south, east or
west, it does not matter; the location or locality or geographical enclaves does not matter.
Regardless the socio-cultural, economic and political environment an online journalist finds
himself, he has to take into consideration objectivity, truth, balance and fairness, credibility etc.
This theory of ethics is based on the argument that a right action should be right in all places at
46

all times and in all circumstances. Teleological Theory: The word teleological comes from the
Greek word "teleo" which means result or consequence. This theory is the opposite of
deontological theory in that the emphasis is on the consequence of an action on the people. In
taking ethical decisions, the individual has to weigh the consequence of such actions on the
people. Here, people judge a moral ethics not by rule but, by the aftermath effects. The
prediction is that, it is the result or consequence of an action that determines the rightness or
wrongness of such actions hence, teleological theory is also called consequence ethics or
consequentialism. Therefore, in any situation, one should calculate the possible consequences of
performing various actions relevant to that situation and choose the one that produces the
greatest ratio of good or evil. Consequence oriented theories emphasize that we should look at
the possible consequences or practical implications of our intended actions in order to determine
whether an action is right or wrong. If the bad consequence outweighs the good ones, then, the
proposed action should be abandoned and it should be regarded as morally wrong. Should the
good consequence outweigh the bad ones however, the proposed action should be considered as
morally permissible. Situational Theory: This theory tries to strike a balance between legalistic
and antinomian theory. The situational theory of ethics considers the rightness or wrongness of
an action in relation to the particular situation in which the doer of the action finds him or
herself. Ethical decision making should depend on the context or situation; it should aim at
contextual appropriateness. The snap with the theory like that of antinomian is that often times,
practitioners are guided by mere feelings, instincts and intuitions that are not too good for taking
decisions that would affect many lives.
THE NEED OR OTHERWISE FOR ETHICAL CONSIDERATION IN THE FIELD OF
ONLINE JOURNALISM:
The speed and anonymity provided by the internet can play fast and loose with journalistic
ethics. The internet has created a fourth kind of journalism next to radio, television, and print
journalism. Online journalists have received little or no attention from researchers, perhaps
because few pure online journalistic efforts exist, compared to the wealth of trivia, entertainment,
personal communication and pornography. These bedfellows make adherence to an ethical code
all the more necessary, particularly in a time when public trust is in journalism has
ebbed.(Yeshua, 2000). The need for ethics in any human endeavour can never be
47

overemphasized as its helps in moderating moral conduct within a particular profession. In this
regards therefore, ethics in both conventional and online journalism is very imperative as it
guides journalists and media professionals in going about their professional duties. The ethos of
journalistic ethics is as follows: - Accuracy (over speed) - Transparency - Attribution Or
Acknowledgement - Corrections - Objectivity Truth.
ACCURACY (OVER SPEED): The internet has turned breaking news into a den of rumors and
false reports. As a result, therefore, online journalists ought to have looked out for this pitfall to
ensure they do not follow the trend of posting false information in order to be fresh and timely.
Martin Bryant (2016) put this clearly when he said the people who have earned my respect are
the ones that have held back and checked, used multiple sources to confirm my report.
Therefore, because the internet is hostile and is uncontrolled environment, accuracy is one of the
ethical considerations over speed in the field of online journalism
TRANSPARENCY: Information shared to the public on the internet by on online journalist
should be transparent in order to ensure the credibility of the online journalists. Being transparent
by the online journalist is absolutely significant for his profession because the internet is widely
open to people from all works of life, as a result, therefore, Martin posit that many large
organizations and individuals are being coning of which can tarnish online journalism image.
ATTRIBUTION OR ACKNOWLEDGEMENT: Attributing sources to news or information
by the online journalists is also a good practice which must be practice as regards to ethical
consideration in the field of online journalism. Therefore, Martin (2016) says attributing sources
is one of the ethical considerations in the field of online journalism. CORRECTIONS: Martin
(2016) says mistakes are inevitable; therefore, it is possible to sometimes have mistakes whether
big or small in the online journalism environment. However, it is important to acknowledge such
mistakes and make necessary correction accordingly. Furthermore, Martin says acknowledge of
mistakes is more honorable than erasing them or pretending it never happen in on line
journalism.
OBJECTIVITY: This is one of the need of ethical consideration that an on line journalism has
to take cognizance of as Martin (2016) observes that impartiality very important in the field of on
line journalism because it helps the on line journalist to be neutral in dealing with sensitive issues
48

that has to do with the public. Therefore, impartiality implies that on line journalist should stay
unbiased and be truthful.
TRUTH: According to Asemah (2011) truth is the absolute reality that on line journalism has to
consider in his endeavor. They need a firm commitment to the truth. An allegiance to truth is at
the base of ethical values. An on line journalist is the one who has respect for and tries to live by
the virtues of truth, wisdom, courage, justice and temperance. Therefore, online journalists
should seek truth and be honest, fair and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting
information.

SUMMARY
The need for ethical considerations is very paramount to the field of online journalism, such as
accountability, Transparency, objectivity, Corrections, attribution or acknowledgement and
impartiality, because it helps the online journalists to be accurate or balance in their day to day
activities. The need for consideration is to help online journalist to stipulate rules, guidelines,
norms and principles that would guide the online journalists in making moral decisions.
Attempting to gain public acceptance or prevent public outcry.
CONCLUSION
There is need for ethical consideration in the field of online journalism due to the fact that the
internet has gone wild, wild west, because such ethical consideration instills in the online
journalist a continuing sensitivity to his every action, to his every decision; it integrates or blends
with his total search for truth and it gives him general awareness of himself, others and of the
consequences of interpersonal relations. A concern for ethical consideration in on line journalism
is the key plank in any on line journalistic platform; it is the alpha and omega of public
communication

49

GROUP FIVE (5)


There are basically 4 broad classifications of online journalism news sites, with relevant
examples, discuss these classifications. Are the classifications exhaustive? If yes why? if no
why?
What is Online Journalism?
Networked Publics, University of Southern California, provides the following definition of
Online Journalism; Online journalism refers to news content produced and/or distributed via the
Internet, particularly material created by journalists who work for mainstream market driven
news organizations. While blogs and other emerging forms of online news communication are
widely acknowledged as significantly influencing mainstream news content both on and offline,
they are considered here a distinct phenomenon and treated under the category of alternative
media. To online journalism veteran Doug Millison; The simple answer is, of course,
journalism as it is practiced online. Journalism is any non-fiction or documentary narrative that
reports or analyzes facts and events firmly rooted in time (either topical or historical) which are
selected and arranged by reporters, writers, and editors to tell a story from a particular point of
view. Journalism has traditionally been published in print, presented on film, and broadcast on
television and radio. Online includes many venues. Most prominent is the World Wide Web,
plus commercial online information services like America Online. Simple Internet email also
plays a big role. Also important are CD- ROMs (often included with a book) linked to a web site
or other online venue, plus intranets and private dial-up bulletin board systems. Before
identifying different kinds of journalism online, one has to explicitly note that the Internet as it
can be considered to be affecting journalism can be discussed in two ways: the inroads it has
made into newsrooms and on desktops of journalists working for all media types in terms of
Computer- Assisted Reporting (CAR); and how it has created its own professional type of news
work: online journalism (Deuze, 1999).
TYPES OF ONLINE JOURNALISM NEWS SITES
Mainstream News sites: The most widespread form of news media production online is the
mainstream news site, generally offering a selection of editorial content (be it shoveled from a
linked parent medium or produced originally for the Web) and a minimal, often moderated form
50

of participatory communication (Schultz, 1999; Jankowski and Van Selm, 2000; Kenney,
Gorelik and Mwangi, 2000). Examples are the much- acclaimed sites of CNN, the BBC and
MSNBC. Most online newspapers fall into this category as well. Course materials, handbooks
and curriculum planning of journalism schools and university departments can be considered to
be largely based on this type on online journalism, combining technological skills (working with
certain software, learning XML or HTML for example) with specific news writing skills for the
Web (Nielsen and Morkes, 1997; McGuire et al., 2000). This type of news site cannot be said to
differ in its approach to journalistic storytelling, news values, relationships with audiences
fundamentally from journalism as it is practised in print or broadcasting media. In Nigeria,
perfect examples of this kind of websites are all the online version of some conventional
newspapers and some other online-only websites e.g; vanguardngr.com, dailytrust.com,
thisday.com.ng, punch.com.ng, sunnewsonline.com, premiumtimes.com, newsdiaryonline.com,
with an inclusion of the schools official website; http://www.abu.edu.ng. Index & Category sites:
A second type of online journalism is much less located within the mainstream media
organizations, but is often attributed to certain search engines (like Altavista or Yahoo),
marketing research firms (like Moreover) or agencies (News index), and sometimes even
enterprising individuals (Paperboy). Here online journalists offer (deep-) links to existing news
sites elsewhere on the World Wide Web, which links are sometimes categorized and even
annotated by editorial teams. Such sites generally do not offer much editorial content of their
own, but do at times offer areas for chat or exchanging news, tips and links by the general public
i.e. for instance maintaining some kind of bulletin board system (BBS). A well-known example
thereof is the option most search engines offer to add a site, which site will then be subjected to
editorial scrutiny. On a side note one could argue that sites offering some editorial content and
furthermore providing (annotated) links to content elsewhere on the Web such as the Australian
Arts & Letters Daily, Bosnian Mario Profacas news site or the infamous Drudge Report by Matt
Drudge fall into this category. What is sometimes labeled as new online journalism is the
phenomenon of the Weblog or Blog, an often highly personal daily diary by an individual, not
in the least by a journalist, telling stories about experiences online and offering readers links with
comments to content found while surfing the Web (Bunn, 2001; Lasica, 2001). These types of
individual journalism (a.k.a. user-generated content sites) can be located somewhere between
index- and comment sites, as they tend to offer limited participatory communication (more often
51

it is just one person speaking his or her mind about certain issues), but provide plenty content
and comment on content. Examples to further explain these kind of sites are Nairaland.com and
lindaikeji.blogspot.com which offers news and information with external links to take you to
other websites for more and detailed information.
Meta & Comment sites: This third category of news sites are sites about news media and media
issues in general; sometimes intended as media watchdogs (Media channel, Freedom forum,
Poynters Medianews, E&Ps E- Media Tidbits; see Pavlik and Powell, 2001), sometimes
intended as an extended index & category site (European Journalism Center Media news, Europe
media to name two European examples). Editorial content is often produced by a variety of
journalists and basically discusses other content found elsewhere on the Internet. Such content is
discussed in terms of the underlying media production processes. This journalism about
journalism or meta-journalism particularly flourishes online. In this respect the Internet has
contributed to the further professionalization of journalism in general, as the ability and
willingness to publicly reflect on itself and be self- critical is generally seen as one of the
defining characteristics of a profession (Beam, 1990; Boylan, 2000). Share & Discussion sites:
As noted earlier, the critical distinction made in our model is between content and connectivity.
Odlyzko (2001) in particular argues, that the first and foremost reason for success of new media
technologies like the Internet and the World Wide Web is the fact that people want to connect
with other people on a boundless global level (see also Rushkoff, 1997). In other words: it is
just a communications infrastructure (Rushkoff, 2000).
Online journalism as the fourth type of journalism online utilizes this potential of the Internet
in that it primarily facilitates platforms for the exchange of ideas, stories and so on, sometimes
centered around a specific theme such as world-wide anti-globalization activism (Independent
Media Centers, generally known as: Indymedia) or computer news (Slashdot, featuring a tagline
reading: News for Nerds, Stuff that Matters ). Several sites have opted to commercially exploit
this public demand for connectivity, by organizing more or less edited platforms for discussion
of content elsewhere on the Net ( Plastic, Nerve, Feed). This type of online journalism has also
been described as group weblogs, offering personal accounts of a more or less unlimited
number of individuals about their experiences on the Internet (Lasica, 2001). Examples of this
kind of sites cold still include nairaland.com, xdadevelopers.com and so on. Note that you have
52

to register and log into this sites before you could become eligible to participate in discussions on
this sites. It is also important to note that all the above mentioned online journalism news sites
are exhaustive. This is because, looking at the various kinds of news sites/websites on the
internet, it would be discovered that the above mentioned types/ categories of online journalism
news sites is all encompassing and there is not a single site on the internet that does not fall into
one of the above mentioned news sites. It is also important to note that while some news sites
may fall into one of the above mentioned types of sites, others may belong to more than one of
them, depending on its service delivery, mission and goals. It is therefore safe to say that the
above mentioned types of online journalism news sites are exhaustive.
|

53

GROUP SIX (6)


With detailed analysis and factual links, compare and contrast www.gamji.com with
www.vanguardngr.com.
INTRODUCTION
Online Journalism is a contemporary form of journalism where editorial content is distributed via
the Internet as opposed to publishing via print or broadcast. What constitutes digital journalism
is debated by scholars. However the primary product of journalism which is news and features
on current affairs, is presented solely or in combination as text, audio, video and some interactive
forms, and disseminated through digital media platforms http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/
digital_journalism&sa=
TYPES OF ONLINE JOURNALISM
Online Journalism is in different types, and is classified in either of these categories;
MAINSTREAM NEWS SITE: This is the most widespread form of news media production
online, which generally offers a selection of editorial contents. Contents of these sites are
minimally moderated for participatory communication, as such most online news papers can be
said to fall under this category. This type of news site cannot be said to differ in its approach to
journalistic storytelling, news values, and relationships with audience fundamentally from
journalism as it is practiced in print or broadcast media.
META AND COMMENT SITES: These are sites about news media and media issues in
general, they are sites where online journalism is being discussed by journalists and are intended
as online media journalism watchdogs. Here, editorial contents are often produced by a variety of
journalists and they basically discuss other contents found elsewhere on the internet. Such
contents are discussed in terms of the underlying media production processes. In this respect, the
internet has contributed to the further professionalization of journalism in general, as the ability
and willingness to publicly reflect on itself and be self-critical is generally seen as one of the
defining characteristics of a professional (Beam,1990; Boylan, 2000).
INDEX AND CATEGORY NEWS SITES: This type of online journalism are hardly found
within the mainstream media organization, they are more or less attached to search engines. Here
54

online journalist offer deep links to existing news sites elsewhere on the worldwide web, which
are sometimes categorized and even annotated by editorial teams. These sites generally do not
offer editorial contents of their own, but offer areas for the exchanging news , tips and links for
the general public.
SHARE AND DISCUSSION SITES: These are platforms that facilitates peoples desires to
share ideas, to communicate with each other on equal footing and to allow all and sundry to
participate in the communication circle. In other words it is an online based communication
infrastructure that allow people to share their feelings to the public without hindrance. All online
writings fall into either of the above categories.
As such, gamji and vanguardngr as online media outlets may differ in content production and
writing styles. The similarities and differences between these two are discussed below;
ABOUT WWW.VANGUARDNGR.COM
Vanguardngr is an appendage and an online version of Vanguard Newspapers owned Vanguard
media limited which was established in 1984 by Mr. Sam Amuka Pemu. Vanguard is one of the
leading Newspapers in Nigeria today. It has developed a rich heritage as the most entertaining,
refreshing, authoritative, detailed and reader friendly newspaper in the country. The Paper was
established with the vision of Being the best Media group with the Widest Reach through
innovation backed by excellent service delivery, highly motivated human capital and latest
technology. Its Mission is to impact positively on its readers/clients and society by providing
high quality, reliable and affordable media products for promoting knowledge, political stability
and economic prosperity. The core values of Vanguard are as follows; Equity and Fairness
Integrity People Centeredness Excellence Vanguard features include: Sports, Advertising,
Management and Marketing, Maritime, Energy, Hi-tech and computer, Aviation, Business and
Banking, Tourism, Health, Labour, Human angle and Women Affairs, Politics, Education and
Insurance. In addition, the paper also features respective columnists like Kola Animasuan, Dele
Sobowale, Pini Jason, Tony Momoh, Bisi Lawrence, Bunmi Sofola, Treena Kwenta and others.
These names make vanguard a compelling read for discerning minds. Over the years of the
papers existence, Five (5) editors have overseen its daily editorial matters. These are; Muyiwa
Adetiba 1984-1985 Akitoye Akiode 1985-1991 Frank Aigbogun 1991-1998 Gbenga Adefaye
55

1998-2008 Mideno Bayagbon 2008 till Date As at today, the paper has on its stable, The Daily
Vanguard, Saturday Vanguard and Sunday Vanguard. It has since added other titles taking care
of specialized interests. These include Cyberlife, Sports Vanguard, Financial Vanguard, Hi-Tech,
Sweet crude and Allure. These titles are so-products specific that no serious policy maker,
businessman, students or interest groups and politicians would ignore. According to
vanguardngr./ about/ for every copy of vanguard purchased, at least ten people queue to read the
same copy. Vanguard is a family oriented newspaper which also appeals to the upwardly mobile
executives and captains of industries. Categorically it is a newspaper with a penetrating reach to
all the nooks and crannies of Nigeria which is today complemented by the most sophisticated,
global readership through its internet address http:/www.vanguardngr.com. Vanguard is a
reference point in sports journalism.
ABOUT WWW.GAMJI.COM
GAMJI.COM is a web based news site founded by Dr. Ismail Iro in 1994 and Coordinated by
Magaji Galadima. According to hotnewspapers.com, Gamji online newspaper offers daily local
news from Kaduna, Nigeria and also offers national and international news as well as weather,
sports, lifestyle, entertainment, business, politics, movies, travel, books, education and more. It
also include classifieds for; jobs, cars, real estate and announcements like; celebrations and
obituaries. Gamjis media collaborates range from local media outlets such as BusinessDAY ,
DailyIndependent, Daily Sun (tabloid) , Daily Trust, Desert Herald , Leadership , National Daily
, New NIGERIAN , Observer , Punch , The Guardian , The News , Thisday, Times of Nigeria,
Tribune, Vanguard, Weekly Trust, to international media outlet such as AL-JAZEERA , IRIN,
Yahoo News, UN News Wire, USA Information, WorldNews Network . According to tritti,
Gamji receives 37 daily unique visitors, its domain has 558 Facebook likes, 1,053Facebook
shares and its websites value is 11\100.
BRIEF HISTORICAL BACKGROUND OF WWW.GAMJI.COM
In an interview excerpt obtained on beta.groups.yahoo.com, titled Dandalin Siyasa: Ba a raba
Hanta Da Jini as truncated from blueprintng.com by Abadulaziz Abdulaziz on 4 January 2013.
Malam Magaji Galadima was among some Kano state indigenes sent to undergo training in
broadcasting in the United States, in the early 80s. They came back to midwife the state-owned
56

City Television (CTV) now Abubakar Rimi Television (ARTV). Galadima, later joined the
rested Kano-based newspaper The Pen as a sub-editor, he later became the editor of the paper
before leaving the media for the oil industry. Best known for his robust contribution on the
Internet and online forums, Galadima told of how they started the once popular news website;
gamji.com and the challenges encountered. He recounted of how Gamji was a product of
marginalization of Northern media not only in Nigeria but the world at large as at that time, as
such Gamji became an outlet through which the voice of the North became heard and noticed
such that it became an online force to reckon with by global media like BBC who put up gamjis
link on its website. Galadima concluded with the hopes that one day, gamji.com will not only
operate online, but also become part of the mainstream media in Nigeria. Gamji writers are
mostly renown columnist, editors, authors and experts in various fields, particularly media who
produce editorial contents drawn from mostly mainstream media, scholarly write ups and poetry.
Some of these editor are: ABUBAKAR JIKA ALIYU TILDE AMINU MAGASHI
MUHAMMAD IBRAHIM JIDEOFOR ADIBE KOMBO MASON MAGAJI GALADIMA
MOBOLAJI E. ALUKO MOHAMMED HARUNA NASIR A. EL-RUFAI NOWA OMOIGUI
OSELOKA H. OBAZE PAUL MAMZA POEMS PRINCE C. DICKSON SAM NDA-ISAIAH
SANUSI L. SANUSI WADA NAS For disclaimers sake, Gamji assures that all views expressed
therein are those of the individual writers not those of Gamji. Facts and accuracies are the
responsibilities of the authors, also, some people may use pseudo names or generic emails, to
which Gamji has no way of verifying. Therefore, an authors identity should not be inferred on
the basis of name, subject matter, or any other characterization presented
SIMILARITIES AND DIFFERENCES BETWEEN WWW.VANGUARDNGR.COM AND
WWW.GAMJI.COM VS DIFFERENCES
From the above submissions, one can easily deduce the differences between vanguardngr and
gamji as under:
1. CLASSIFICATION : While vanguardngr can be typically classified as an example of
Mainstream News site, offering a selection of editorial contents online as well as
producing in hard copies following the moderations and In- house style of the parent
media (Vanguard media limited), gamji could be classified under the Meta and Comment

57

News site, as it could be said to carry editorial contents that are often produced by variety
of journalists who basically discuss contents found elsewhere on the internet.
2. CONTENT PRODUCERS : The content producers of vanguardngr comprise of both
reporters and editors working for Vanguard newspapers. For gamji however, its content
producers are mostly renown editors and media experts as well as seasoned writers who
give professional views to issues and matters arising in the nation and the world at large.
3. LOCATION: Although having online presence, the location of the parent media for
vanguardngr is situated or based in the south- western part of Nigeria with its head office
in Lagos as well as branch offices in Port-Harcourt and Abuja. gamji on the other hand is
a northern based online newspaper with Kaduna state as its home of origin
4. POPULARITY : In terms of familiarity, vanguardngr has carved a niche for itself
becoming a household name in both conventional and online media unlike its counterpart
gamji whose online presence is not that known.
5. ANNOTATIVE REPORTING: To annotate means to add more information to what is
already known and to link up with the existing information to other sources, where an
online reader can click and read background information on topical news issues of the
day. Annotative reporting is therefore a common parlance in gamji than it is found in
vanguardngr as it (vanguardngr) mostly offers more of news on the seconds or on the
hour as it breaks, while details follow subsequently.

SIMILARITIES
Despite the differences noted above, both gamji and vanguardngr share some area of
commonality, this include but not limited to:
1. ONLINE PRESENCE: gamji quite like its counterpart vanguardngr have online
presence, this online presence make them easily accessible at home and on the go,
enriching their readers with well articulated and informed news stories as they break.
2. INTERACTIVITY: In terms of interactivity, both gamji and vanguardngr are open
to interactions between the content producers and their readers via their Comment
sections or through Navigational options provided. But most importantly through
Adaptive interactions which adapts to the needs and behaviors of their readers. These

58

interactive opportunities makes it widely participatory, leading to more visitations


and referrals.
3. ARCHIVABILITY:All contents published on gamji and vanguardngr, are not totally
discarded. Rather, they are archived (stored). The contents being archived makes it
easy for the users to easily fall back at them later as reference points.
4. LINKAGES: With much credence to their online presence, both gamji and
vanguardngr provide its readers with varying degree of linkages in the form of
hyperlinks and hypertexts. These hyperlinks and hypertexts fore-aide navigation from
one news source or story to another. With linkages, the readers are fed with more
information within and outside the news sites making the online environment highly
connected. As Ted Nelson rightly puts it, hypertext creates a delivery system for
separate closed units.
5. HYPER-ADAPTIVITY : Both gamji and vanguardngr are products of Converged
media and Digitization resulting from advancements in information and
communication technology, which facilitates open communication between all
devices used in some ways or the other to gather, select, edit and distribute
information thus, creating contents in an environment which interacts with its
surroundings without limitation from the media formats.
CONCLUSION
Online newspapers are now being used by newspaper industries and journalists to report facts,
produced and distributed through the internet, as it has been noticed that people no longer buy
printed hard copy newspapers unless if they want to keep it for reference purposes, and the
internet users see online papers as readily available with less costly network of access. After all,
the internet makes news more interesting because of its interactivity and multimediality, like
video, audio, images etc that are used. As such traditional media are being forced to adopt and
adapt to this new form of information dissemination system with wider coverage and global
reach. Using ethical considerations, extensively discuss the type of journalism practiced by
www.saharareporters.com and www.premiumtimesng.com

59

GROUP FIVE (7)


Clearly explain how you can incorporate the technologies of Web 2.0 into your work as
online journalists.
INTRODUCTION
Since the invention of the internet and widespread of its services, there has been a continuous
decline in the use of other media. This has made the internet around the world a major means of
news and information dissemination. A trend of this nature has consequently had a baneful effect
on conventional media, and paradoxically, a positive one on online journalism and e-news. This
evolution in media practice is also unequivocally evident in the developing countries of Africa
such as Nigeria where the onset of online journalism is gradually putting the demand of
newspapers on the ware.
ONLINE JOURNALISM
Akinreti (2003), describes online journalism as the media share of digital revolution, it combines
this with core journalism skills of reporting, editing, and news production features and
programmes. However online journalism is the process of gathering, editing and reporting news
or information which can be in the form of text, audio, video and some interactive forms, that are
disseminated through online media platforms. Mark Deuse (2003) has isolated three dominant
features that are fundamental to the possibility and vitality of online journalism. The first feature
he identifies is interactivity, which he defines as the ability for readers or audiences of online
content to react to or interact with and even adapt news content presented to them. Another
feature is multimediality, which is the technical capability for news content to be delivered in
multiple platforms text video, audio and animated graphics. The third feature that defines the
exceptionality of online journalism is Hypertextuality, which Dueze describes as the ability of
news sites to connect the story to other stories, archives, and resources and so forth through
hyperlinks. Evolution of the web Web is the largest transformation information construct that its
idea was developed by Tim Burners Lee in 1989. The World Wide Web is not synonymous with
the internet but it is the most prominent part of the internet that can be defined as a Techno-social
system that aids interaction of human based technological network i.e. a system that enhances
human cognition, communication, and co-operation. Web 1.0 Web 1.0 is the first generation of
60

web used in the 1970s, according to Berners Lee it could be considered the Read Only Web
with flat data and a system of cognition. Web 1.0 simply, is an information portal where users
passively receive information without participation and giving the opportunity to post, content
contribution review, and comments and send feedback. Web 2.0 Web 2.0 was defined by Dale
Dougherty in 2004 as a Read and Write web. It allows assembling and management of large
global crowds with common interest in social interaction. It consists of reading and writing,
communities, peer to peer, XML, RSS, tags, sharing, trade sales, Google, web applications,
broadband, bandwidth cost, conversations, word to mouth, web services and platforms. Web 3.0
Web 3.0 is the executable phase of World Wide Web with dynamic applications, interactive
services and machine to machine interactions. Web 3.0 is also known as semantic web which
was thought of by Tim Berners Lee, the inventor of World Wide Web. Web 3.0 computer can
interpret information like humans and intelligently generate and distribute useful content tailored
to the needs of users. One example of 3.0 is TIVO a digital video recorder, its recording
programme can search the web and read what it finds to you, based on preferences. What is Web
2.0? The concept of Web 2.0 began in late 2004, with a conference brainstorming session
between OReilly and MediaLive International. Dale Dougherty, web pioneer and OReilly VP,
noted that far from having crashed, the web was more important than ever, with exciting new
applications and sites popping up with surprising regularity. Web 2.0 is a term that describes the
changing trends in the use of World Wide Web technology and Web design that aim to enhance
creativity, secure information sharing, increase collaboration, and improve the functionality of
the web unlike Web 1.0 which was read only format.
These have led to the development and evolution of Web-based communities and hosted
services, such as social- networking sites (i.e. Facebook, MySpace), video sharing sites (i.e.
YouTube), wikis, blogs, and enable audience to become active participants and content creators
i.e. they do not only find information online but they also create and share content (Thompson
2007) According to Edison survey (2009) about 15 percent of podcast consumers are also
content creators compared to five percent of those who are not podcast producers. Web 2.0
focuses clearly on the user because it is the users that produce the content, from people who post
information on Wikipedia, Facebook and other formats of compacted information. Meanwhile,
facebooking, amazon, tagging, blogging and social media have paved way for the development
of the web. Web 2.0 provides not just information but also allows contribution from other users
61

in order to edit and report their information, web 2.0 is specifically a 3-way kind of information,
including the social media platform because it allows generation of information, contributing
(posting, component) and also chatting among users or members, this stands in contrast to
mainstream media. Web 2.0 has allowed the consolidation of a more active role to online users.
This introduced the new idea that users are also producers of contents or information. The
capabilities of web 2.0 have changed communication process into a more dynamic one which
makes it somewhat difficult to differentiate information from opinions. In this vein, Guallar
(2007) highlights the creation of an interaction space between media content and users as there
already exist the concern for making the visitors something more than mere readers once they are
invited to not only give their opinion but also to participate in the elaboration of the content.
Characteristics of web 2.0 Furthermore, the characteristics of Web 2.0 provide the ability for
visitors to make changes to the content e.g. uploading videos and sharing opinions. It provides
the ability to link with other users e.g. finding people and chatting with them. It also serve as an
avenue to share content i.e. sharing of weblinks. Web 2.0 has the ability to send and receive
information from other sources e.g. tweet email and notification. Web 2.0 sites have higher rate
of interaction and engagement among online individuals and also permit the site visitors to get in
touch with the website in a lot of easier ways.
WEB 2.0 TECHNOLOGIES
Web 2.0 and its technologies have improved the immediacy of online journalism, it makes it
easier for journalists to post contents and source for news online simultaneously. Hence the
technologies of web 2.0 include; blog, podcast, social networks, E- portfolio and micro-blogs.
Blog or A Weblog is a personal journal or online journals maintained by individuals which are
generally commentaries on a particular topic or issues on the Web. Weblogs cover many
different topics, and express as many opinions as there are people writing them. Some blogs are
highly influential and have enormous readership, while others are mainly intended for a close
circle of family and friends. A Weblog can be said to be a website that is updated frequently,
most often displaying its material in journal-like chronological dated entries or posts. Blogs are
mostly written by one person and are regarded as personal spaces of self- expression. One of the
most revolutionary features of weblogs is that they allow users to publish comments right below
each post. This transforms the blog into a debate arena in which the author initiates a
62

conversation with an informative or an opinion text that the readers can comment on and follow
up actively. Moreover, the conversation can be extended to other weblogs, as bloggers can
comment on other weblog posts in their own blogs, and use a trackback tool to inform about their
comments in the original post, with a link to their weblog. This way, blogs often form around
them a community of users who contribute comments, and of other bloggers who interconnect
their posts in an ongoing conversation (Stauffer, 2002). In blogging, weblog posts are hypertext
links to websites and online documents the author refers to in the text. One of the reasons for this
practice is that many weblogs concentrate on commenting on interesting content or initiatives
that the blogger has found while surfing the Net. However an online journalist can easily publish
their ideas and articles on blogs and millions more can comment on them. A blog is a fluid,
dynamic medium that allows more conversation than a library which allows people to read,
write, and comment on the blogs. For instance, an online journalist who specializes on fashion
can use weblog and conveniently post news, articles and trends on fashion that will interest
subscribers, which encourages hits,its readers can comment and react to whatever was posted as
long as they visit the blog and they are subscribed e.g naij.com, kuyetbamai.wordpress.com
PODCAST- Podcast is basically just an audio (or video) file. Podcasting is the process of
distributing audio and video programming over the internet which differs from normal online
audio and video posted on internet. However, what differentiates a podcast from other types of
audio on the Internet is that a podcaster can solicit subscriptions from listeners so that when new
podcasts are released, they are automatically delivered, or fed, to a subscribers computer or
mobile device. An online journalist uses audio and video to report news and give updates on
events in which its subscribers can access the website with their phones, laptops and other
devices once they are connected to the internet. For instance an online journalist can decide to
create a programme (which can be a short video programme that is educational or entertaining )
using podcast to post on the internet. Most podcasts are shared (syndicated) using the RSS
format Real Simple Syndication, the key difference is the distribution model. Social
Networking Social networking Websites provide a virtual community for people interested in a
particular subject or that just want to hang out together. Members create their own online profile
page with biographical data, pictures, likes, dislikes and any other information they choose to
post. Users can communicate with each other via text, voice, chat, instant message, video
conference, and blogs, and the services typically provide a way for members to contact friends of
63

other members, thus enabling everyones network to grow. An online journalist with a social
media account can easily, at his convenient time publish news, articles or other trending issues
through his social networking account via facebook, YouTube etc, with this, its audiences are
active participant as they are free to comment and react on the post. The use of facebooking to
publish news product is common nowadays as online journalist can freely publish any event that
is happening on the spot without necessarily going through the process of gatekeeping. For
instance during the 2015 general election in Nigeria there were various posts which were in the
form of text and video of update about the electoral process in various social networking sites
like nairaland ,twitter, facebook youtube etc. The most popular social networking Websites
include: MySpace, Facebook, Friendster, LinkedIn. E-portfolios- Electronic portfolios also
referred to as ePortfolios or Webfolios. E-Portfolios are digital versions of traditional portfolios.
An e-portfolio is an electronic format which involves personal information of individuals,
records of their work, achievements, goals, profession, skills, etc. However, an online journalist
can create e-portfolio account which consist of its detail or personal information achievements,
goals, etc, which individuals can visit when he or she wants to know about the journalist.
MICRO-BLOGS- Micro-blogging refers to mobile social- networking or themed Instant
Messaging encompassed technologies which enable users to write brief messages, usually
limited to less than 200 characters, and publish them via Web browser-based services, email, or
mobile phones. Its the practice of posting small pieces of digital content which could be text,
pictures, links and short videos on the internet. However, an online journalist can use microblogging in day-day journalistic activities in various ways by posting topical content packages
that will interest audiences. For instance at a plane crash that has just occurred, the journalist
may not be able to gather detailed information, therefore the little he could lay hands on can be
disseminated to their audience as tip of the breaking news with the use of picture or short videos
with his mobile phone. The most popular micro-blogging service today is called Twitter. Other
less popular micro- blogging sites include: Plurk,Tumblr,Jaiku,Pownce.
CONCLUSION
Web is the platform through which nearly everything can be done including email, document
writing and sharing, commercial transactions, phone communication and much more. The
platform allows interactions once information is received or found. Web2.0 is a catch phrase
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created after the dot-com crash to capture the dynamic capabilities and vision of the web when
many had lost hope in its potential. New experiences come mainly from mash-ups; the mixing of
applications and/ contents from different sources to create new services. The experience is
significantly different though and journalists need to learn a lot more about it if only to figure out
effective ways to use it to do the work they do. Companies and technologies harness user
generated content and develop business opportunities. This changes the nature of knowledge,
suggesting the potential to harness collective intelligence.

65

GROUP EIGHT (8)


Using links and citations, explain the suitability or otherwise of Precision Journalism and
Data Journalism in the field of Online Journalism.
The process of gathering and disseminating of information in todays contemporary society as
taking another dimension from the traditional method of gathering information. Journalism
which is the process of gathering, processing, storing and dissemination of information to
anonymous and scattered audience as since taking another shape since the advent of the world
storage library also known as the internet. The internet is a platform where numerous
information and activities of news and information are been stored and annotate by many
conventional journalists. This has been attributed to the creation of online journalism < http://
techblogbiz.blogspot.com.ng/2012/06/ online-journalism-introduction.html > which refers to
news content produced and disseminated via the internet particularly material created by
journalists who work for mainstream market driven news organization. Micheal Fusco in his
analysis of the competing business models of online journalism, he assert that if journalism is the
art of documenting history, then online journalism is the art and science that will allow humans
to document the future. However, in the past few decades marvelous technological advancements
have allowed journalist to tell stories from new perspectives and disseminate them to wider
audiences through a wide resources platform which is located on the internet and this has given
rise

to

the

creation

of

data

journalism

and

precision

journalism

<

http://

datajournalismhandbook.org/1.0/en/ introduction_4.html >.


Elena and Cynthia explained that data journalism is any journalism that involves structured data
which has the ability to analyze and examine numbers and to know how to manage large data
sets and read them correctly. Recently, data journalism has been used in place of the traditional
computer assisted reporting. And it is always seen as interchangeable with the phrase
computational journalism. Cindy and Dale assert that data journalism or data driven journalism is
based on large data sets, which may also be called big data as its relates to social media <
http://webtrends.about.com/od/ web20/a/social-media.htm >, health care, business and science
and it has thus help us in understanding the role of data in our lives more than ever. The usage
and applications of data are reflected in recent high profile topics in the news and websites. Data
journalism

has

yielded

positive

result
66

as

many

blogs

contents

<

http://

www.strategicbusinessteam.com/ successful-entrepreneurs/top-10-most- influential-bloggers-innigeria/ >, management system and social media are all possible through it.
Also media organization uses it to analyze content and other forms the basis of there in house
decisions making This is so, because data are now used as a source of a story and it is used in
info graphics as a part of a story. Royal (2004) argued that data is the basis for the platforms that
drive a media organizations online business. It argues a clear mission per statistical graphics
design, excellence in statistical graphics that consist of complex ideas communicated with
clarity, precision and efficiency. Rogers (2013) proposed the four factors that are instrumental to
the emergence of data journalism as follows:
1. The widespread availability of data via the internet
2. Easy to use spread sheet package on every home computer
3. A growing interest in visualizing data to make it easier to understand
4. Some huge news stories that would not have existed with statistics behind.
This however made Steve Doig (2010) confirmed that data journalism is really just and other
way of gathering information. Meyer

(1970) suggested that scientific techniques of data

collection and analysis should be used rather than the literary techniques are what is needed for
journalism to accomplish its search for objectivity and truth. With this, journalist now uses data
not only to tell their audiences immediate story but to also tell the audience what some certain
development might actually mean. This is why data is seen as an opportunity for many
journalists as they uses the available data to reveal how some abstract threat such as how
unemployment affects people based on their age, gender, education, culture, religion, culture,
religion etcetera. Through data journalism, journalist can now analyze the dynamics of a
complex situation like riots, political debates, corruptions and help everyone to see possible
solutions to complex problems.
For instance, in Nigeria many journalist have went to an extra mile to use available statistics to
show Nigerians how looting of public funds have been causing more ills to the nations economy
Many media organizations are now searching for sense makers and experienced professionals
who know the rudiment of digging through data and transforming it into something tangible.
67

Data as such is unwieldy. It is quite hard to scope in correctly for visualization. It needs
experience journalists who have the stamina to look at often confusing, often boring raw data and
see the hidden stories in there. The knowledge to know what to do with data by journalist is
tagged the essence of the new precision journalism. One of the many problems of data
journalism is the thought of how to gather process and disseminate sourced data. However, the
process of reporting news stories through data journalism involves collection of data, storing of
data, retrieving of data, analyzing of data, reduction of data and communicating or disseminating
of the news stories.
Lillian (2012) posit that, data journalist have an important role in helping to lower the bareness
to understanding and interrogating the data and increasing the data literary of their readers on a
mass scale. Subsequently journalist now engage in precision journalism when they use
behavioural and social science research methods to gather, evaluate, interprets and analyze
information.

According

to

the

book

the

new

precision

journalism

<

http://www.unc.edu/~pmeyer/book/ Chapter1.htm >: journalism and the scientific tradition,


Precision journalism is also done through computer assisted reporting where computer searches
might span public records, professional journals. As soon as these journalists embrace the mind
set and practices of a scientific objectivity and scientific ideals to the entire process of mass
communication. This has in turn demonstrated the applicability of social science research
methods to the very real problems of news gathering in an increasing complex society With
precision journalism issues of objectivity and bias are completely removed because journalism
requires discipline and the discipline cannot be achieved in the traditional way of reporting news
or the discipline of art, hence a paradigm shift of reporting suitable in journalism reporting which
is the scientific way of incorporating both the powerful data gathering and scientific analysis
which will aid a veritable truth. All this method and processes of gathering and reporting news
was enhanced and made possible in the 1970s through the availability of computers which made
large bodies of data available to journalists in a way that was not possible before and due to the
failure in news circulation to keep up with the growth in number of households this made
publishers to pay more systematic attention to the market place and the factors that motivated
readers to pay time and money with the publishers product.

68

Through precision journalism the traditions of objectivity are eradicated, a tradition that keeps
the journalist from imposing personal view point of the readers. However, this new non fictional
remains an interesting effort of coping with information implementing and finding a way to
communicate essential truth which may not be the most appropriate kinds. Some of the
suitability of precision is that the journalist can assess the views of their audience through
systematic sampling rather than through random interviews which is the case for traditional
journalism Meyer (2008). Also precision journalist uses statistical information within the context
of traditional news stories in other to establish mundane stories within the story. Example is the
analyses by precision journalist of the extent in which the 1.2 billion dollars arms deal <
http://www.channelstv.com/tag/ economic-and-financial-crimes- commission/page/9/ > saga
have deepening Nigerian economy. Also the issue of the 3 trillion naira debts by Ben Bruce <
http://punchng.com/amcon-shuts- murray-bruce-firms-n10bn-debt/ > Company in which it
amount to almost half of the 2016 budget. Significantly precision journalism has brought up
news and other media product that both researchers and lay men accept and appreciate. The tools
of research such as statistical and qualitative data modeling have improved the power of the
journalist to find hidden and manifest fact to understand them and to clearly explain them to his
readers or audiences. Lawrence Cramberg asserts that there are always hidden facts and truth are
elusive in every domain of human enquiry, however what is needed is to discover this hidden
facts and arrive at elusive truth with a skilled determination to get them. We must also
understand the fact that precision journalism encompasses some of the characteristics of
traditional method of gathering information among them are been skeptical before disseminating
any information, making the story open whereby the issue of secrecy will be completely
removed an instinct for operationalization to test the data for confirmation, ensuring a sense of
the tentativeness of the truth and parsimony i.e. given a choice between your subject. The basic
knowledge of the traditional method of gathering news paved way for precision journalist to
understand the basic process for precision journalism which involves:
1. Information gathering
2. Information interpretation
3. Information documentation and presentation.

69

With this processes precision journalism has been able to promote quantitative accountability by
subjecting all numeric information to the journalistic principles of objectivity, fairness and
balance. This is why Adrian Holovaty (2006) argues that journalists should publish structured
machine readable data alongside the traditional big blob of text. Precision journalist could be
understood from issuer of inadequacies and weaknesses from journalist dependence on press
releases, bias towards authoritative sources and so on are seen by Meyer as stemming from a
lack of application of information science techniques and scientific methods such as pills and
public records. Through precision journalist is seen by many communication scholar as a new
way of gathering and reporting an objective story has some disadvantages posed on the
journalist, which are; 1. It is time consuming and this could make a story losses its timeliness and
becoming stale 2. Due to its statistical and computational method of analyses it becomes difficult
for journalist to understand and comprehend its technical know-how.
NOTE: please watch on data visualization tools http://datajournalismhandbook.org/ /
/delivering_data_7.html < http:// datajournalismhandbook.org/1.0/en/ delivering_data_7.html
>

70

GROUP NINE (9)


Using ethical considerations, extensively discuss the type of journalism practiced by
www.saharareporters.com and www.premiumtimesng.com
ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS OF ONLINE JOURNALISM
Online journalist has its ethics to one who takes it as a job art or science profession or hobby.
New forms of journalism require new forms of approaches to ethical consideration though many
of the conventional ethical consideration may remain, many others will always emerge.
According to Lynch 1998 most journalist contend that traditional values remain relevant online
they disagree sharply about how this values play out in a medium defined immediacy
interactivity burgeoning competition and unflagging pleasure to produce revenue the problem
say some editors and ethicist is that online environment changes rapidly and unpredictable.
According to David Carlson a professor of online journalism there isn't anything more important
than the ethical practice of journalism. Ethical consideration the journalism together as without
ethics, the credibility of many publications would be nothing. Bill Mitchell 2002 says ethical
considerations for online journalism are no different than traditional journalism therefore ethical
journalistic considerations refer to the principles of journalism set out to provide an excellent
basic guide for everyone who aspires to lunch themselves into the public information sphere.
SAHARA REPORTERS
Sahara reporters is an online news agency based in New York city that focuses on promoting
citizen journalism by encouraging everyday people to report stories about corruption human right
abuses and other political misconduct in Nigeria, a frontier news source for advocacy journalism
Sahara reporters has been referred to as the wiki leaks of Africa by the daily beast. "It was like
the buzz of the semi automatic gun when the trigger is pulled, I was not surprised that Nigerians
accepted our model of journalism quickly my understanding as an activist is that they saw this as
an alternative media holding those in power to account" Omoyele Sowore founder of Sahara
Reporters Nigerians media landscape has not been the same since the first major citizen
journalism emerged some years ago or to be prcised since January 25th 2006, it marked the
advent of a new estate of the realm. Sahara Reporters.com was established by an activist
Omoyele Sowore a 39year old Nigerian blogger who proudly proclaim himself citizen journalist
71

he has been the scourge of Nigerian political leaders and key private figures that many regard as
central to the rot in Nigerian state. The citizen website proudly invites every Nigerian citizen to
report yourself and that is what has been happening with record hits and record level of citizens
generated content. This is what William Dutton of the oxford internet institute calls the fifth
estate of the realm. Perhaps nothing better describes or capture the very essence of the work of
Sahara Reporters than the preamble found on Alexa.com a web information company. Some of
its ethical concerns include: -Issue of credibility -Using information as commodity
Accountability
ISSUE OF CREDIBILITY: "Sahara reporters is an outstanding ground breaking website that
encourages citizen journalist to report ongoing corruption and government malfeasance in Africa
using photos text and video dynamically the site informs and prompts concerned African citizen
and other human right activist globally to act denouncing official sanctioned corruption the
material impoverishment of its citizenry defilement environment add the callous disregard of the
democratic principles enshrined in the constitution".
ACCOUNTABILITY: The day of its launch, Sahara Reporters issued a 750-word press
statement in new York and emailed it to thousand of Nigerian at home and the Diaspora and
media houses. it announced its birth unabashedly. In the introduction the new citizen website
anchored its conviction on article 19 of the universal declaration of human right everyone has the
right to freedom of opinion and expression this right includes freedom on hold opinion without
interference and to seek receive and impart information and ideas through any media regardless
of its frontiers it was a far sighted more that would later inculcate it against several law suit and
attempts to censor and proscribe it. The website then moved quickly to place the ownership of
the site in the hands of the ordinary citizen. "It is a unique organization comprised of ordinary
people whose only mission is to seek truth and publish it without fear or favour his means that
apart from the team of professionals running its affairs Sahara reporters is also an umbrella for
anyone who has something to say and who seeks an avenue to say and who it as far as what
he/she says is verifiable and ascertainable as true and the information therein is in the public
interest".
USING INFORMATION AS COMMODITY: From the start the activist behind Sahara
Reporters was upfront about his mission and the nature of journalism to which he hoped to
72

dedicate his site he bluntly stated that "we are unapologetically practitioners of advocacy
journalism because to us journalism is not an end in itself" Apart from making Nigerians its
primary audience it sought to establish to continental platform we are here because we have
something to give to our people we are here because we want to give them power of information,
he power of truth we believe with this power the Nigerian and African people can begin to set a
right in every sphere all that is wrong with our mother continent". Five years into operating as a
citizen journalism website Sahara reporters issued a re-warded editorial policy in which it sought
to re-state the rationale behind its separation and answer some of the questions and allegations
thrown at it titled "Sahara reporters": our philosophy and "editorial policy", October 25, 2010. It
declared that we are citizen reporters not professional journalists". This was no doubt a direct
answer to many who have criticized the quality and bent of the stories the site had carried. it
stated further that we depend on the effort of concerned citizen who act whistle blowers as well
as the main source for our exposes. The information on this site, sometimes in the form of rare
documents photos videos and audio records comes from citizen anxious to see our pages are
open and free to everyone who wishes to contribute story tips aesthetic information or even
rebuttals and with this the site is firmly locked in place the citizen orientation of its content and
practice of journalism.
WHAT IS CITIZEN JOURNALISM?
It is a kind of journalism in which the users or audience create content online rather than wait to
be fed by the traditional media outlets. According to Serena Carpenter a citizen journalist can be
described as an individual who intends to publish information meant to benefit a community.
Citizen journalism has further been described as the individual "playing an active role in the
process of collecting reporting analyzing and disseminating news and information in their report
we media : how audience are shaping the future of news and information Shayne Bowman and
Chris Willis, write further that "the intent of this participation is to provide independent reliable
accurate wide- ranging and relevant information that a democracy require. According to Joyce
Nip citizen journalism also known as OPEN SOURCE JOURNALISM can also be defined as a
process in which people were entirely responsible for gathering content along with envisioning
producing and publishing the news product. Roles hitherto played exclusively by the traditional
media are now performed by citizen journalism through the virtual community citizen journalism
73

embraces the entire social media platform such as Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Myspace and
Blogosphere. all the content generated from these social media platform alongside comment
from the audience and message board postings, pictures and video uploads constitute what is
now known as User Generated Content (UGC) which is a feature closely associated with the
citizen journalism concept.
ETHICAL CONCERNS OF CITIZEN JOURNALISM
While even the most passionate advocates for citizen journalism concede that none of the
websites devoted to amateur news gathering have gone gangbusters yet and that citizen
journalism is still in its infancy they see the future of the traditional news media as being more
closely linked to bloggers. Many professional and amateur journalist are working to create rules
and guidelines for citizen media. However some media experts say the traditional ethical codes
of conduct will not work for citizen journalists. Leonard Witt, the Robert D. Fowler
distinguished chair in communication at Kennesaw state university and the chief blogger for
public journalism network says ''I don't think we can lift up the old ethics codes and drop them
right in and hope that they work''. but there should be ethical codes that citizen journalists read
and understand ''. The key is transparency to be honest in what you are doing, most people on the
internet try to do the right thing. Proponents of citizen journalists argue that bloggers must be
more transparent than traditional media. Traditional news organization value balanced reporting
but that isn't necessarily an ethical mandate in the realm of citizen journalists. Even advocacy
websites with clear conservative or liberal point of view can be seen as reliable if the information
they provide is substantiated. They do not have a historic trusted brand to give their stories
credibility and therefore must follow ethical codes of conduct to earn a reputation for having
honest, accurate reporting which are key to success in an increasingly competitive media
environment. However some ethics experts say citizen journalists cannot act ethically if they
don't know or understand the traditional ethical codes of conduct. Andy Schotz, a reporter for the
Herald -Mail, a daily newspaper in Hagerstown, Maryland and chairman of the society of
professional journalists' ethics committee said it is difficult for consumes of citizen journalism to
discern what content has been thoroughly and ethically gathered and what content is inaccurate
or biased.

74

One of the potentially more complicated ethical mandates of traditional journalist is to avoid
conflict of interest, real or perceived. Professional journalists most disclose any conflict of
interest and if they fail to do so will at best be reassigned or at most face immediate termination.
Citizen journalists are under no such obligation of disclosure however citizen journalism
proponents argue that conflict of interest issues are exaggerated by the mainstream media. If a
citizen journalist has a natural bias because of a conflict of interest it will be obvious to the
reader and therefore discredited. Examples of conflict of interest abound in citizen journalism
particularly in local communitys coverage. There is no method of preventing a high school
basketball coach from blogging about a game his team played without disclosing his status, pr a
restaurant owner from writing a review about his own establishment. Even professional
journalists are often confused by conflict of interest rules sine there can be nuances to ethical
standards. For example is it acceptable to write a one- time feature story about a non- profit
organization to which you have contributed money? Is it acceptable to contribute money to a
political campaign that you're not covering but that your news organization has written about?
Contrary to what citizen journalism advocates claim some professional journalists argue that
conflict of interest issues are some of the most important and nuanced ethical considerations in
media. Traditional news organizations are not immune to ethical gaffes, as citizen journalism
advocates point out. The difference is that professional journalists are subject to quality control.
Editors question the accuracy, objectivity, and sourcing of stories. Traditional news
organizations routinely punish journalists who do not adhere to ethical guidelines. For
professional reporters, the personal stakes of making ethical mistakes are far greater than for
citizen journalists. Even the mainstream best newspapers arent pure in what they do, Witt
said. But theres more chance for abuse with citizen journalism.
QUALITY CONTROL OF CITIZEN JOURNALISM
While quality control of traditional media is handled by the news organizations themselves,
citizen journalism is subject to the litmus tests of the community of readers. The idea is that the
community will turn off bloggers who are inaccurate and biased and will confront those who
have plagiarized material. Reputable websites with citizen journalism require that all bloggers
register, which means disclosing their names, if not for publication, at least for the editors or
website moderators. Many websites use profanity filters to avoid publication of obscenities and
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hate speech. Within the stories, links to supplemental information further ensure the reporting is
accurate and balanced. Even the strongest advocates of citizen journalism acknowledge that
bloggers with extreme viewpoints and nefarious motives occasionally find a forum but say the
barriers of registration and filters make it difficult for them to find a voice on a reputable newsbased website. Its a very different kind of journalism, Potts said. All the voices are heard. No
one person can dominate whats going on. In this system, the rest of the community will correct
inaccuracies. The community acts as the editors in this case. People tend to be less outrageous
than traditional editors fear. While Potts, a professional journalist published corrections to
inaccuracies on his citizen journalism website, there is not an accepted industry-wide standard
for making corrections to blogs. In most traditional news organizations, inaccuracies on a
website are corrected within the story and an addendum is added that clarifies the mistake
contained in the previous version. This process functions much like a traditional newspaper in
which corrections are published in the next edition after the mistake is discovered. Some
professional journalists argue, however, that community policing of accuracy and balance is not
enough to ensure adherence to ethical standards. The idea that youre going to let something go
up unfiltered and wait for the correction is absurd, Schotz said. The truth should be verified
before publication. The debate between citizen journalism advocates and professional
journalists over ethical issues is crystallized by Wikipedia, an online encyclopedia that relies for
its information on contributions from readers. Some citizen journalism advocates argue that the
information contained on Wikipedia is no less authoritative than the Encyclopedia Britanica.
Wikipedia is a classic example of community policing of accuracy. But fans of the website
acknowledge that once an inaccuracy is published, it is difficult to remove from the public
consciousness even after it has been taken down from the website. Traditional journalists,
however, say the website is not a reliable source.They point to a case in which a Tennessee
newspaper editor was accused of assassinating President John F. Kennedy. The notation has
since been removed from the website, but, according to Schotz, it took more than a month Some
citizen journalism advocates are encouraging bloggers to uphold traditional media ethics. One of
the few places where citizen journalists can receive training in ethics is at the Center for Citizen
Media, a website containing special ethical codes of conduct for citizen journalists. Dan Gillmor,
bestselling author of We the Media: Grassroots Journalism by the People, for the People and one
of the nations leading experts on citizen journalism, oversees the website, which receives about
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25,000 hits per month. He views ethics as a place where traditional journalism and citizen
journalism should be working together. [Ethics] is an area where we need to do a lot of
evangelizing and outreach. I particularly think this is a role the traditional media should play.
They have a platform and ought to use it. I dont think its that complicated. If people behave
honorably, we can get a lot done.
PREMUIM TIMES
Premium times is a Nigerian media organization based in Abuja it was founded in 2011 and have
a vision to help strengthen Nigeria's democracy advance the socio-economic wellbeing and the
right of people promote and enrich their cultural practices and advocate for best practices good
governance transparency and human rights in line with the values expected of a modern
democratic state. It has an online publish website www.premiumtimesng.com with breaking
news stories/headlines. It is a mainstream news site which deals with purely editorial content.
The present managing editor of premium times Nigeria is Musikilu Mojeed an award winning
investigative editor at Nigeria's NEXT Newspaper. Mojeed who studied mass communication at
the Akwa Ibom state polytechnic and communication arts at the university of Uyo Nigeria, was
on the board of the forum for African investigative reporters and is a member of investigative
reporters and editors. He is a member of the world's foremost investigative journalism group the
international consortium of investigative journalist. Little wonder why the type of journalism
practiced by premium times Nigeria can be traced to Investigative Journalism. Looking critically
into the headlines and stories carried by Premium times it can be seen that they contain the
characteristics of investigative journalism. Rey Belen brought out some common characteristics
of the widely appreciated investigative reports of which are: a. Adverbial in nature b. Moralistic
in tone c. In the public sector the report is mostly on misuse of funds mismanagement and abuse
of power d checking and re-checking of sources and documents.
WHAT IS INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALISM?
It Is a form of journalism in which reporters deeply investigate a single topic of interest, such as
serious crimes, political corruption or corporate wrong doing? An investigative journalist may
spend months or years researching and preparing a report. Investigative journalism is a primary
source of information. Most investigative journalism conducted by newspapers, wire services
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and freelance journalists. Practitioners sometimes use the term ''accountability reporting''. An
investigative journalist may make use of one or more of these tools, among others on a single
story: -Analysis of documents such as lawsuits and other legal documents, tax records,
government reports, and corporate financial filings -Databases of public records -Investigation of
technical issues including scrutiny of government and business practices and their effects Research into social and legal issues -Subscription research sources such as LexisNexis Numerous interviews with on-the- record sources as well as in some instances, interview with
anonymous sources. Premium Times carry headlines such as: "Stella Oduah responds to
allegations: she stole 2.5billion using Maid's account". "Why CBN replaced board management
of Skye Bank
ETHICAL CONCERNS OF INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALISM
The word ethics when associated with journalism practice has elicited various definitions
including a set of principles and norms that, at least to some degree, guided journalistic
practice (Ward, 2006, p.100), or a way of studying morality which allows decisions to be
made when individuals face specific cases of moral dilemma (Frost ,2011) or the study of the
grounds and principles for right and wrong human behavior (Sanders, 2003). The three scholars
agree that ethics reflects human values such as courage, self-control and generosity and focuses
on the standards of right and wrong. Journalists, in the course of their duty, deal with the choice
between what is moral or immoral if published. They even have to deal with moral and legal
issues regarding how they obtain information. The information that investigative journalists
seekthat which touch on corruption, immoral

ehavior and other vice are always private or

hidden by the power elite and as such journalists are forced to dig deep to obtain information.
Indeed, investigative journalisms key controversy has centered on how journalists obtained
information. It has always been an ethical and legal grey area, in which journalists have often
stepped over the boundaries in pursuit of stories and sometimes it isnt easy to avoid ethical
problems. Journalists should certainly be honest in their activities, in both investigating and
reporting. But suppose some public corruption can be investigated only under cover, with the
journalist pretending to be someone ready to make a corrupt deal? .A journalist might have the
highest regard for the right to privacy, but some information about a politician doesnt qualify for
this protection
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GROUP TEN (10)


Using factual evidence, clearly explain the different business models used by youtube and
Netflix.
Introduction
A business model is an abstract representation of an organization, be it conceptual, textual,
and/or graphical, of all core interrelated architectural, co-operational, and financial arrangements
designed and developed by an organization presently and in the future, as well as all core
products and/or services the organization offers, or will offer, based on these arrangements that
are needed to achieve its strategic goals and objectives. (Al-Debei Et al, 2008) According to
Alexander (2010) business model describes the rationale of how an organization creates,
delivers, and captures value, in economic, social, cultural or other contexts. The process of
business model construction is part of business strategy. Osterwalder et al. (2005) consider the
Business Model as the blueprint of how a company does business. Slywotzky (1996) regards the
business model as the totality of how a company selects its customers, defines and
differentiates it offerings, defines the tasks it will perform itself and those it will outsource,
configures its resources, goes to market, creates utility for customers and captures profits. Chen
(2009) stated that the business model has to take into account the capabilities of Web 2.0, such as
collective intelligence, network effects, user-generated content, and the possibility of selfimproving systems. He suggested that the service industry such as the airline, traffic,
transportation, hotel, restaurant, information and communications technology and online gaming
industries will be able to benefit in adopting business models that take into account the
characteristics of Web 2.0. He also emphasized that Business Model 2.0 has to take into account
not just the technology effect of Web 2.0 but also the networking effect.
He gave the example of the success story of Amazon in making huge revenues each year by
developing an open platform that supports a community of companies that re-use Amazons ondemand commerce services. Examples of Business Model Include:
Bricks and clicks business model

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Business model by which a company integrates both offline (bricks) and online (clicks)
presences. One example of the bricks-and-clicks model is when a chain of stores allows the user
to order products online, but lets them pick up their order at a local store.
Collective business models
Business system, organization or association typically composed of relatively large numbers of
businesses, tradespersons or professionals in the same or related fields of endeavor, which pools
resources, shares information or provides other benefits for their members. For example, a
science park or high- tech campus provides shared resources (e.g. cleanrooms and other lab
facilities) to the firms located on its premises, and in addition seeks to create an innovation
community among these firms and their employees.
Cutting out the middleman model
The removal of intermediaries in a supply chain: cutting out the middleman. Instead of going
through traditional distribution channels, which had some type of intermediate (such as a
distributor, wholesaler, broker, or agent), companies may now deal with every customer directly,
for example via the Internet.
Direct sales model
Direct selling is marketing and selling products to consumers directly, away from a fixed retail
location. Sales are typically made through party plan, one-to-one demonstrations, and other
personal contact arrangements. A text book definition is: The direct personal presentation,
demonstration, and sale of products and services to consumers, usually in their homes or at their
jobs.
Freemium business model
This is a business model that works by offering basic Web services, or a basic downloadable
digital product, for free, while charging a premium for advanced or special features. Pay what
you can (PWYC) is a non-profit or for-profit business model which does not depend on set prices
for its goods, but instead asks customers to pay what they feel the product or service is worth to
them. It is often used as a promotional tactic, but can also be the regular method of doing
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business. It is a variation on the gift economy and cross- subsidization, in that it depends on
reciprocity and trust to succeed.
The Business Model of Youtube
YouTube began when PayPal employees created a video- sharing website on which users can
upload, share, and view content. The Internet domain name http://www.youtube.com was
activated on Monday, February 14, 2005 at 9:13PM. During the summer of 2006, YouTube was
one of the fastest growing sites on the Web, uploading more than 65,000 new videos and
delivering 100 million video views per day in July. It was ranked the fifth most popular website
on Alexa, far out-pacing even MySpaces rate of growth. The website averaged nearly 20 million
visitors per month, according to Nielsen/ NetRatings, where around 44% were female, 56%
male, and the 12- to 17-year-old age group was dominant. YouTubes pre- eminence in the
online market was substantial. According to the website Hitwise.com, YouTube commanded up
to 64% of the UK online video market. YouTube entered into a marketing and advertising
partnership with NBC in June 2006.
The 3 biggest drivers of the value of content in this ecosystem are:
Metadata & CTR :
YouTubes algorithm tries to align ads that are appropriate for the viewer. The more aligned the
ad is to the demographic of the viewer, the higher the click-through-rate (CTR), the more
YouTube charges the advertiser for the ads, and therefore the higher your content is valued.
Metadata is one of the big drivers of ad alignment so make sure its all relevant and be careful
with the words you choose to use, especially in the description and search tag fields. Use specific
words that align to your content (e.g. death metal or mountain biking) and avoid overly
general terminology (e.g. music or film).
Watch Time: One of the biggest drivers of value now is watch time, which means the more of
the video someone watches on average, the greater the value of your video. This also means that
if people arent engaged with your video and lose interest quickly, the value of your content
drops. If someone is using YouTube just to listen to a song, for example, and the song runs on
longer than they have the patience for and they jump to a new video, your rate will drop. So
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consider how the cut down radio versions might make more sense for YouTube; or for film
producers, consider how the length and type of the clip you upload impacts engagement and
therefore the value. Almost half of YouTubes traffic comes from mobile devices, so consider
your typical viewer, the distractions they have, the size of their screen, their patience, and ensure
your videos align with that experience to obtain the highest rates. And finally, even picking
thumbnails that more accurately represent your video can result in higher rates, since luring
viewers with a deceptive thumbnail means theyll leave the page and lower your watch time.
Premium vs. UGC: Videos that are uploaded to channels under The Orchards partnership with
YouTube will earn significantly higher rates than user-uploaded clips. The videos are considered
to be from a trusted source and therefore receive the highest paying ads. Ensure you are
marketing and promoting the version under our account, which is considered the premium
version, as opposed to a version uploaded by a user, and you could see an increase in the value of
your streams by as much as 4 to 5 times. YouTube is the #2 search engine in the world with 800
million users, and its a quickly growing revenue stream for all types of rights owners
Clients of The Orchard can take comfort in having one of YouTubes premier partners manage
their rights and handle the logistics, introducing them to new opportunities before the rest and
navigating the complexity of this brand new industry on their behalf. YouTubers are able to
profit for themselves in multiple ways. One way is through revenue generated by advertising in
their videos, but YouTube usually keeps around 45% of that revenue. Some YouTubers are also
expanding into the book business by publishing their own books like Alfie Deyes The Pointless
Book from the PointlessblogYouTube channel and Zoe SuggsGirl Online from the YouTube
channel Zoella. Others like Michelle Phan have expanded in all other Medias. She has a book
called Make Up and her own cosmetics line from LOreal. She also has endorsed products
including Dr. Pepper, Toyota and SanDisk. The video hosting and sharing platform YouTube is
the archetypical example of a media platform that exhibits the characteristics of the Web 2.0
model, and the associated ideals of participatory culture in its community and in the rhetoric of
the company. In many ways, YouTube is a microcosm of the digital media ecosystem and its
competing stakeholders and interests.
Business Model of Netflix

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Netflix represents a classical service business model in the video-on-demand industry where
users of the service and payers are the same entity. Netflix was the pioneer who used this
business model to offer entertainment content using video streaming technology in exchange for
subscription fee. The exemplar firm and others: Netflix video on demand originated from DVD
rental business in 2007. The company still operates it along with its VoD streaming business.
Netflix is the largest online movie and TV show streaming provider with more than 40 million
streaming members as of 2013; Netflix streaming accounted for 89% of shows streamed in Q1
2013. The company also produces original content. Video on demand industry is a crowded one,
with multiple players and business models. Players in the industry compete on price, exclusivity
and range of content, user experience in terms of personalization and compatibility with different
devices. Some of the large competitors include Hulu, which uses a hybrid business model partly
based on advertising revenues, and Amazons Prime offering as a complementary to their retail
business. The rating algorithm makes better use of movies available on the website tailored to
his/her taste to watch. Netflix also creates value by having one of the widest supported devices
ranges, including game consoles, tablets, PCs, and internet TVs. Finally, Netflix offers original
and exclusive content to its subscribers. New and exclusive series are being released as full
season, getting Netflix users hooked. Users do not have to wait week by week for episodes to be
released is being released. Value capture Netflixs major source of revenue are the subscription
fees of $7.99 per month for an unlimited TV shows and movies streamed over the internet to
their TVs computers and mobile devices. Currently Netflix does not use price discrimination for
its customers. A popular critique of video streaming service Netflix is that the company cannot
bring in enough revenue from customers alone to keep up with the need to continue purchasing
new content for their service: Netflix needs advertisements to bring in more money. Netflixs
response has always been a solid No. Instead, the company is planning to increase their fees,
while still protecting the original add-free value proposition.
Youtube and Netflix
YouTube and Netflix operate with similar streaming technology and both offers a platform to
consume media and video content, the companies are very different in terms of value proposition
and operations. The difference is in the business models each company uses. YouTube develops
a model that offers free videos on a global scale, but with local idiosyncrasies in the most
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important market. It offers a large quantity of videos and allows users to upload and share videos
through the internet, via websites, mobile devices, blogs or emails. \
However, in general, they are short in duration and poor in quality. In most cases, the videos are
submitted and produced by users themselves which has the potential for creating technological
problems (video streaming capacity will have to be high performance), legal difficulties
(possible violations involving protected or inappropriate content) and commercial problems
(reluctant among advertisers to insert adverts in low quality videos). Netflix on the other hand is
the leading advertising- free subscription video platform. Netflix streams 100 million hour of
videos across the internet daily and has been a paid service from the onset. It is a subscription
service and therefore has zero reliance on advertisers to fund or monetize its original
programming and the absence of adverts also makes for a Better viewer experience. According
to Paul MacDougall (2012) Although, YouTube has been streaming video longer than Netflix
and has access to even resources than Netflix but Netflix streaming still works so much better
than YouTube video streaming source in the sense that YouTube is free, the viewers are not their
customers, their customers are advertisers and this causes a different alignment of priorities.
YouTube only needs to provide a minimum experience to keep viewers engaged to continue
serving them adverts, and is otherwise inclined to reduce the marginal cost of an eyeball as much
as possible without significantly reducing the numbers of eyeballs. On the other hand, With
Netflix, the viewers are the customers, they pay them a subscription a month and expect it to
work, if it doesnt work to a certain expectations of quality, they will stop paying and Netflix
will lose money. This causes Netflix to focus their talents on making viewers experience meet or
exceed that expectation. The buzzword Web 2.0 is often viewed as an attempt to commercialize
participatory culture by incorporating the logic and rhetoric of social engagement and democratic
empowerment into the technology of web-based consumer products and services. Jenkins (2006)
is careful to differentiate participatory culture from Web 2.0 and acknowledge their diverging
interests, stating that the former may or may not be associated with commercial interests, while
the latter is essentially a business model. He admits, Web 2.0 companies follow a commercial
imperative, however much they may also wish to facilitate the needs and interests of their
consumer base, but nevertheless remains positive about the potential of participatory culture,
and entreats industry leaders to emulate the model in their businesses (Jenkins, 2006; 2010). Web
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2.0 is epitomized by the growth in online video and social networking websites that offer
accessible, low cost self- publishing and communication tools, and feature n easy-to-use
programming templates to attract a massive following of users. Various business manifestos
have celebrated the entrepreneurial prospects inherent in Web 2.0, mimicking the idealistic and
opportunistic tone of the 1960s counterculture (Weinberger et al., 2000). They tend to frame
Web 2.0 as an enabler of participatory culture and its utopian ideals, such as the democratization
of cultural production, making a causal link between technological innovation and positive social
and economic change.

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